Measuring Employment Outcomes in TANF

Research Report

Measuring Employment Outcomes in TANF

Abstract

This report offers insights on the challenges of and opportunities for measuring employment outcomes in the Temporary Assistance for Needy Families (TANF) program. State programs differ dramatically, and one state may appear to have better outcomes than another simply because of differences in the structures of their TANF programs, not because of any true differences in outcomes for TANF recipients. Implementing uniform national employment outcome measures poses serious challenges and has the potential for unintended consequences. More promising are the options for the federal government to support and encourage state-specific employment outcome measures in TANF.

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