By Kaaryn S. Gustafson

ISBN-10: 0814732313

ISBN-13: 9780814732311

During the last 3 a long time, welfare rules were proficient through renowned ideals that welfare fraud is rampant. hence, welfare guidelines became extra punitive and the limits among the welfare process and the felony justice procedure have blurred--so a lot in order that in a few locales prosecution caseloads for welfare fraud exceed welfare caseloads. in truth, a few recipients control the welfare process for his or her personal ends, others are gravely harm by means of punitive guidelines, and nonetheless others fall someplace in between.In dishonest Welfare, Kaaryn S. Gustafson endeavors to solve those grey components by means of offering insights into the background, social development, and lived event of welfare. She indicates why dishonest is all yet inevitable--not simply because bad everyone is immoral, yet simply because traditional participants navigating advanced platforms of principles tend to turn into entangled regardless of their top efforts. via an exam of the development of the crime we all know as welfare fraud, which she bases on in-depth interviews with welfare recipients in Northern California, Gustafson demanding situations readers to question their assumptions approximately welfare regulations, welfare recipients, and crime keep an eye on within the usa.

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Additional resources for Cheating Welfare: Public Assistance and the Criminalization of Poverty

Example text

In the article, Reich suggested that individuals’ increasing reliance on government benefits was creating risks of government control over individuals and should prompt Americans to develop new notions of property and property rights. He argued that individuals’ dependence on government-controlled benefits created greater opportunities for the government to control lives, coerce behavior, and curtail liberties. Under Reich’s analysis, government benefits such as welfare should be given the status of property and the legal weight of traditional forms of property.

The 1970s: Growing Concerns about Government Waste and Fraud The welfare rights movement and all of its players did produce some dramatic effects on the welfare system. The number of people receiving AFDC tripled between 1960 and 1974 (Patterson 1994, 171). The efforts of welfare rights activists contributed, both directly and indirectly, to this surge. It also became harder to live on welfare. S. economy slowed down in the 1970s, welfare benefits were devalued as a result of rapid inflation (Piven and Cloward [1971] 1993, 371-72).

At the same time, the welfare queen stereotype portrayed welfare recipients as uneducated, lazy, and irrational. A welfare queen was someone who did not, or perhaps would not, pursue the long-term well-being of her family. She was someone unmotivated to seek an education to improve her station, someone who refused to take the economic risk of becoming independent of the welfare system. Worst of all, she had children without regard for her inability to raise them in middle-class comfort. She neither participated in the paid labor market nor took on the caretaking responsibilities for a working husband.

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Cheating Welfare: Public Assistance and the Criminalization of Poverty by Kaaryn S. Gustafson

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