The authors analyze data from two nationally-representative U.S. surveys that include cohorts of young women before and after the 1996 Welfare Reform. Women were more likely to have their first birth precede their first stable employment after than before the reform. Women with this life-course sequence were at higher risk of single motherhood and, as single mothers, were at higher risk of “disconnection” simultaneously from earned income and public cash benefits. Declines in employment in the Great Recession period resulted in disconnection for between one fifth and onefourth of single mothers who did not experience stable employment before their first birth.
SOURCE: Rendall M, and Shattuck R. “First Birth before First Stable Employment and Subsequent Single-Mother “Disconnection” before and after the Welfare Reform and Great Recession.” Journal of Poverty, 10 December 2018.
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