Welfare reform or welfare deform? Historically, most of the so-called “welfare reform” enactments have made life more difficult for impoverished children and their families. The latest welfare deform program, Temporary Assistance to Needy Families (TANF) P.L. 104-193, is the latest attempt at reforming welfare. It imposes 2-year time limits on impoverished families. After two years many impoverished families, who for the most part are single mothers, lose their safety net and are sentenced to becoming homeless and/or foodless in the United States of America.
The anti-family and anti-child message is clear, that working is more important than parenting as women are expected to look for work soon after their babies are born. This means many babies and very young children are housed in day care centers and in the care of strangers instead of their parents.
Welfare officials and politicians continue to tout the propaganda that after TANF, caseloads are going down. The truth is that poverty has risen. With these strict timelines, what happens to that family when they no longer are eligible for aid? Where do they go? How do they live? To make things worse, about 70% of the TANF federal and state-matching money goes to welfare bureaucracies and to balance state budgets. Less than 30% of it goes to “payments to families with children." Before TANF, 80% of the AFDC money went to “payments to families.” TANF has been a resounding success for everyone, but poor families.