Caregiving and welfare reform: Voices of low-income foster mothers


By bhadmin February 2, 2021

Welfare reform policies instituted in 1996 have significantly altered the context in which care is performed by diminishing resources available to poor mothers and places further limits on full-time caregiving as an option for them. This has created additional challenges for low-income foster mothers, many of whom are women of color. Based upon interviews in English and Spanish with 100 foster mothers on TANF, this study explores caregiving as an important aspect of gender and cultural identity and survival strategy for these foster mothers. The perceptions and experiences of poor women caring for troubled children with limited resources are viewed in the context of welfare reform. Policy considerations regarding caregiving are also discussed.

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