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Who Should Help the Poor? Poverty Lecture 7. Today’s Topic Who Should Help the Poor? Why bother with this topic? –Can we Justify government intervention.

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Presentation on theme: "Who Should Help the Poor? Poverty Lecture 7. Today’s Topic Who Should Help the Poor? Why bother with this topic? –Can we Justify government intervention."— Presentation transcript:

1 Who Should Help the Poor? Poverty Lecture 7

2 Today’s Topic Who Should Help the Poor? Why bother with this topic? –Can we Justify government intervention from an economic perspective? –Can economics help us determine how much we should give? To whom? In what form? Economic arguments for Government intervention Can private charity replace the role of government in helping the poor? –Statistics on charitable giving

3 Topics, Cont. What role for government and individuals was asserted in Economic Justice for All? Does it help us answer the questions: Should we help? Who should we help? How should we help? Reauthorization of TANF and Catholic Church’s (USA)

4 The Inefficiency of Poverty “The budget [$2.77 billion] drains money from two-thirds of federal agencies and continues a large military buildup. Pentagon funding would increase by nearly 7% and, for the first time in Mr. Bush's presidency, claim more than half the government's expenditure on discretionary programs.” WSJ on line, quoting from dyn/content/article/2006/02/06/AR html dyn/content/article/2006/02/06/AR html Butter Guns

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7 Trends in Charitable Giving For time trends, google: Giving USA 2003 full version ppt. Giving%20USA%202002%20Full%20ve rsion.ppt

8 Who gives to Charity? "Charitable Giving: How Much, By Whom, To What, and Why." Paul G. Schervish, John J. Havens and Mary A. O ’ Herlihy. The Nonprofit Sector: A Research Handbook, Second Edition. Woodrow Powell and Richard Steinberg (eds.) Yale University Press

9 How much does the Government spend on aid to the poor? Cash assistance to the poor (SSI, TANF, EITC, GA) totalled $32 billion in Source: Schiller, Economics of Poverty and Discrimination, p. 211

10 How much does the Government spend on aid to the poor? Schiller puts the total annual cost of In-kind programs in 2002 at $323 billion. –Food Stamps: $20 billion –Medicaid:$270 billion –Housing $22 billion –School food: $6 billion –WIC: $5 billion –Total:$323 billion Source: Schiller, Economics of Poverty and Discrimination, p. 228

11 Position of the USCCB on TANF Reauthorization Maintain current law on hourly work requirements for participants, especially for parents with children under 6. –Parents in 50 percent of all families that receive TANF assistance in a state must participate in work activities for a specified number of hours each week (30 hours for parents with children ages six and over, 20 hours for parents with younger children)

12 USCCB on TANF Reauthorization, cont. Support marriage and families by removing barriers to two parent families receiving assistance and providing appropriate counseling resources to low-income couples –Requires states to enroll 90 percent of the two- parent families that they assist in work programs for at least 35 hours each week of every month.

13 USCCB on TANF Reauthorization, cont. Support effective fatherhood programs; allowing states to pass-through child support directly to TANF families; funding for voluntary programs to support healthy marriages and strong families; and for research and technical assistance focusing on family formation and healthy marriage activities.

14 USCCB on TANF Reauthorization, cont. restore benefits eligibility to legal immigrants –Lawful permanent residents (LPRs) who entered the United States on or after August 22, 1996 are ineligible for food stamps and SSI until they become U.S. citizens or can be credited with 40 quarters of work. They are also barred from federal TANF and Medicaid until they have lived in the United States for five years after entering the country or, at state option, until they become U.S. citizens or can be credited with 40 quarters of work

15 USCCB on TANF Reauthorization, cont. give states greater flexibility to count genuine education and training as work

16 USCCB on TANF Reauthorization, cont. Provide at least $6 billion in new mandatory child care assistance for working parents and providing year-long transitional Medicaid –Provides for an additional $200 million in federal matching child care funds for states each year from 2006 through –$11 billion short of the amount that CBO has estimated states need to meet the new work requirements and ensure that their current child care funding keeps pace with inflation. Sources: United States Conference of Catholic Bishops, and Center on Budget and Policy Priorities,


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