Worth beyond Work? Civic Engagement and Social Support Provision of Benefit Recipients

Michelle Livermore, Mary Ellen Brown, Younghee Lim

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Abstract

Changes in government assistance laws over the last 30 years reflect concern that government benefits cause dependency. Public discourse classifies able-bodied, non-working individuals as “undeserving” of government assistance and the literature focuses on whether individuals receiving government assistance contribute to society by engaging in paid work. This study investigates if 120 residents of a low-resource community receiving more government assistance contribute to society at the same rates as those receiving less. Multivariate regression analysis results show that receiving more forms of government assistance is not associated with the degrees of civic engagement and social support provided, demonstrating equal social contributions.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)300-317
Number of pages18
JournalJournal of Poverty
Volume24
Issue number4
DOIs
StatePublished - Jun 6 2020

Keywords

  • Deserving poor
  • civic engagement
  • poverty
  • public assistance
  • social support

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Demography
  • Sociology and Political Science

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