Giving Compass’ Take:
• Urban Institute lists six reasons child care for parents seeking education and training needs to be part of the policy conversation about work requirements as it relates to the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP).
• What might we take away from this discussion beyond SNAP? How can we develop better child care policies for low-income parents in general?
Stricter work requirement policies for the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) at the federal level were left out of the recently passed farm bill, but state policymakers are still considering whether to expand or establish their own work requirements for SNAP and Medicaid, with the goal of incentivizing employment. There’s no question that good jobs help spur upward mobility. But if we are serious about helping people work, we have to get serious about helping people improve their skills.
Many states have included education and training in work requirement policies as an avenue to meet the requirements. But to make education and training realistic for participants who are parents, child care needs must also be considered.
A lack of affordable and available child care can be a serious barrier for parents seeking education and training. When it’s not available, parents can’t build the skills they need to find good jobs.
As we explore in our recent brief, for parents in states that are expanding work requirements, the inability to seek education and training can have serious repercussions. If they cannot find child care and do not get the education and training they need to meet new work requirement demands, they may lose vital benefits that allow them to buy food, receive medical care, and afford a home.
Read the full article about work requirement policies for SNAP by Gina Adams and Shayne Spaulding at Urban Institute.
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