The Public Interest

New Jersey’s experiment in welfare reform

Gary S. Young & Ted G. Goertzel

Fall 1996

IN the wake of the welfare-reform plan passed by its legislature in January of 1992, the state of New Jersey has seen a significant reduction in birth rates and welfare dependency in its poorest cities. And, paradoxically, the new evidence of these changes, from two independent and reliable sources, suggests that the apparent mechanism of change was quite different from that anticipated by the plan’s architects.

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