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Feminist News


September-21-95

Welfare Reform: The Senate and House Versions

Now that the Senate has passed its version of the Welfare bill, it goes to a conference committee so that both houses can reach a consenus. Below is a description of the similarities and differences between the House and Senate bills.

Both versions abolish the Federal entitlement program, thereby eliminating any guarantee that all poor families who qualify will receive benefits. Instead, the Federal government will give states block grants with which they can design their own welfare programs. Both bills also require recipients to work after two years.

The House bill does not have any requirements on what states must spend, prohibits teen-age, single mothers from receiving benefits and prohibits women who have more children while on welfare from receiving additional benefits. The Senate bill requires that for five years states spend at least eighty percent of the block grants on welfare. The Senate bill allows the states to decide whether or not to give teenage, single mothers and mothers who have additional children aid.

Media Resources: New York Times - Sept. 20, 1995