EconPapers    
Economics at your fingertips  
 

The Effect of Safety Net Programs on Food Insecurity

Lucie Schmidt (), Lara Shore-Sheppard () and Tara Watson

No 19558, NBER Working Papers from National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc

Abstract: Does the safety net reduce food insecurity in families? In this paper we investigate how the structure of benefits for five major safety net programs - TANF, SSI, EITC, food assistance, and Medicaid - affects low food security in families. We build a calculator for the years 2001-2009 to impute eligibility and benefits for these programs in each state, taking into account cross-program eligibility rules. To identify a causal effect of the safety net, we use simulated eligibility and benefits for a nationally representative sample as instruments for imputed eligibility and potential benefits. We also perform a two-sample instrumental variables estimation in which we use simulated benefits as instruments for actual reported benefits. Focusing on non-immigrant, single-parent families with incomes below 300 percent of the poverty line, the results suggest that each $1000 in cash or food benefits actually received reduces the incidence of low food security by 4 percentage points. These estimates imply that moving from the policies of the 10th percentile state of Kentucky to the 90th percentile state of Vermont would reduce low food security by 1.7 percentage points on a base incidence of 33 percent. We are unable to reject equivalent impacts of cash and food assistance. The results also highlight the importance of jointly considering a full range of safety net programs.

JEL-codes: H31 I38 (search for similar items in EconPapers)
New Economics Papers: this item is included in nep-agr
Date: 2013-10
Note: CH HE LS PE
References: View references in EconPapers View complete reference list from CitEc
Citations: View citations in EconPapers (5) Track citations by RSS feed

Published as Lucie Schmidt & Lara Shore-Sheppard & Tara Watson, 2016. "The Effect of Safety-Net Programs on Food Insecurity," Journal of Human Resources, University of Wisconsin Press, vol. 51(3), pages 589-614.

Downloads: (external link)
http://www.nber.org/papers/w19558.pdf (application/pdf)

Related works:
Journal Article: The Effect of Safety-Net Programs on Food Insecurity (2016) Downloads
This item may be available elsewhere in EconPapers: Search for items with the same title.

Export reference: BibTeX RIS (EndNote, ProCite, RefMan) HTML/Text

Persistent link: https://EconPapers.repec.org/RePEc:nbr:nberwo:19558

Ordering information: This working paper can be ordered from
http://www.nber.org/papers/w19558

Access Statistics for this paper

More papers in NBER Working Papers from National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc National Bureau of Economic Research, 1050 Massachusetts Avenue Cambridge, MA 02138, U.S.A.. Contact information at EDIRC.
Bibliographic data for series maintained by ().

 
Page updated 2019-10-03
Handle: RePEc:nbr:nberwo:19558