The Long Term Impact of Cash Transfers to Poor Families
42 Pages Posted: 14 May 2014 Last revised: 6 Jun 2022
Date Written: May 2014
We estimate the long-run impact of cash transfers to poor families on children's longevity, educational attainment, nutritional status, and income in adulthood. To do so, we collected individual-level administrative records of applicants to the Mothers' Pension program--the first government-sponsored welfare program in the US (1911-1935) --and matched them to census, WWII and death records. Male children of accepted applicants lived one year longer than those of rejected mothers. Male children of accepted mothers received one-third more years of schooling, were less likely to be underweight, and had higher income in adulthood than children of rejected mothers.
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