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The Receipt of Government Food Assistance: Differences Between Metro and Non-Metro Households

Robert Nielsen (), Martin C. Seay () and Melissa J. Wilmarth ()
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Martin C. Seay: Kansas State University
Melissa J. Wilmarth: University of Alabama

Journal of Family and Economic Issues, 2018, vol. 39, issue 1, No 10, 117-131

Abstract: Abstract This research investigated differences in households’ receipt of government food assistance through such programs as the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program; Special Supplemental Nutrition Program for Women, Infants, and Children; free and reduced school meals; and related local and/or federal programs. With panel data from the Survey of Income and Program Participation that span the Great Recession, differences in the receipt of government food assistance in metro and non-metro areas were identified. Longitudinal random effects models suggest that despite relatively similar levels of food insecurity in 2005 and 2010, a higher proportion of non-metro households received government food assistance. Results also suggest that this assistance gap widened post-recession when government resources were expanded. These results inform a continuing debate about the efficient allocation of resources intended to reduce food hardship disparities, and increase family economic well-being, in metro and non-metro areas.

Keywords: Food assistance; SNAP; WIC; Metro; Rural; SIPP (search for similar items in EconPapers)
Date: 2018
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DOI: 10.1007/s10834-017-9528-5

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