WASHINGTON—Heritage Foundation President Kay Coles James released the following statement about the introduction of important reforms to the Temporary Assistance to Needy Families (TANF) program that are intended to help people get back to work. The reforms are championed by Sen. Steve Daines, R-Mont., Rep. Kevin Brady, R-Texas, and members of the House Ways and Means Committee.
“We know the history of government assistance programs: rather than lift people out of poverty, they have created generational poverty and left millions of Americans perpetually dependent on government. There are few things more debilitating than not being able to provide for oneself and one’s family.
“Assistance programs must help—not harm—the people they are intended to serve. It’s time to ensure that people not only get the temporary assistance they need to get through the tough times, but that they also get help with the more meaningful solution of finding work.
“The Jobs and Opportunity with Benefits and Services Act ensures that able-bodied adults who receive cash, food, housing, and medical assistance find work or prepare for work as a condition of receiving those taxpayer-funded benefits. That’s a solution a vast majority of Americans support and an idea that works.
“Especially in this economy where we have more job openings than workers to fill them, able-bodied heads of households should be able to find work and feel the pride of taking home a paycheck to support their families. This proposal helps them to do just that.”