Indiana University SPEA Edward J. Bloustein School of Planning and Public Policy University of Pennsylvania AIR American University

Panel Paper: The Impact of the Great Recession on Employment and Program Participation

Saturday, November 14, 2015 : 10:35 AM
Zamora (Hyatt Regency Miami)

*Names in bold indicate Presenter

Robert Goerge, Wladimir Zanoni and Nick Mader, University of Chicago
This paper will present findings on a study of SNAP (food stamp) recipients in Illinois from 2000-2013.  It reports on the changes in their wages over this period of time and their participation in SNAP, TANF, Medicaid, child care subsidies and Unemployment Insurance.  The primary question to be addressed is whether those individuals who lost their employment during the Great Recession and utilized the UI benefits and then utilized SNAP were able to recover, find employment and regain the wage level that they earned prior to the Recession.  This is a critical question for policymakers since if these families remain in SNAP and do not recover, they may continue to be dependent on public programs and have the potential to be at risk of requiring publicly-supported health care.  There is reason to be pessimistic given that the SNAP caseloads have not decreased substantially during the recovery.  We analyze the entire population of SNAP recipients in Illinois during this period of time and link individual participant records to the other program records and to wage data.  Latent class analysis is used to understand the different categories on SNAP participants and multivariate models will be used to determine what is associated with wage receipt after SNAP participation before, during and after the Recession.  In addition, an agent-based model is being built to understand the flow of individual cases through the programs that they participate as a tool to understand where the leverage points us to potentially intervene.  We will report on the agent-based modeling results.