From 2013-2015, more than 3 million U.S. workers became unemployed and nearly a third were unable to return to work by 2018. Unexpected job losses can be devastating for individuals and families. However, a job loss and a sudden gap in health coverage creates an added layer of financial distress for households with costly medical needs. These households must absorb the costs of their health care needs or risk experiencing negative health effects.
Income and Wealth
Approximately 16 percent of children in the U.S. live in families with incomes below the federal poverty threshold, potentially creating negative long-term effects that are experienced over the life-course. The Supplemental Security Income (SSI) program provides cash assistance to low-income children with disabilities, expanding family budgets and potentially allowing low-income parents to better protect the health of vulnerable children. However, few studies have evaluated the impact of this policy.
Many public and subsidized housing developments in the U.S. are aging and in need of significant repairs. In a new article in Health Affairs, Ingrid Gould Ellen, Kacie L. Dragan, and Sherry Glied from the P4A Research Hub at New York University Robert F. Wagner Graduate School of Public Service, study the impact of a recent renovation and transfer program of public housing in New York City on the health and well-being of residents.
The Effects of Income on Children’s Health: Evidence from Supplemental Security Income Eligibility under New York State Medicaid
Approximately 16 percent of children in the U.S. live in families with incomes below the federal poverty threshold. This early-life exposure to poverty may have negative long-term health effects. In a new working paper, Hansoo Ko, Renata Howland, and Sherry Glied of the P4A Research Hub at New York University Robert F. Wagner Graduate School of Public Service, estimate the causal impacts of the Supplemental Security Income program on child health outcomes and medical expenditures.
People who receive vouchers or other forms of federal or local housing assistance are not protected from discrimination by federal fair housing or civil rights laws, and in most places, landlords can legally refuse to rent to voucher holders. Researchers will assess whether and under what conditions state and local protections reduce landlord discrimination and improve the rate at which voucher holders are successful at finding housing.
While Earned Income Tax Credit expansions are typically associated with improvements in maternal mental health, little is known about the mechanisms through which the program affects this outcome. Anuj Gangopadhyaya, Fredric Blavin, Jason Gates, and Breno Braga of the Urban Institute assess the impact of more than two decades of federal expansions in EITC credits and the implementation of state-specific EITC programs on maternal mental health in a new working paper.
California was the first state to enact a paid family leave entitlement in 2002, providing eligible workers up to six weeks of paid leave. Jessica E. Pac, Ann P. Bartel, and Jane Waldfogel of Columbia University, and Christopher J. Ruhm of the University of Virginia evaluated the effect of the policy on breastfeeding in this National Bureau of Economic Research Working Paper.
William H. Dow, Anna Godoey, Christopher Lowenstein and Michael Reich released a National Bureau of Economic Research Working Paper investigating whether “deaths of despair” respond to two key policies that raise incomes for low-wage workers: the minimum wage and the Earned Income Tax Credit (EITC).
Despite efforts to rigorously analyze various effects of changes to minimum wages, the research community has largely neglected the link to child development. Changes in the minimum wage may have consequences that go far beyond employment and earnings, but there is almost nothing known about these potential effects.
Using data from National Longitudinal Survey of Youth and other publicly available datasets, the research team will investigate:
In the U.S., the key challenge for many households is housing affordability. Households paying more than one-half of a limited total income for rent have very little left over for food, transportation, education, and other critical expenses. And these rent burdens have only been growing. In 1960, fewer than one in four renters was rent-burdened (or paid more than 30 percent of their income on rent); today that fraction is nearly half.