How Welfare Undermines Marriage and What to Do About It

Monday, September 8, 2014

The effect of married fathers on child outcomes can be quite pronounced. For example, examination of families with the same race and same parental education shows that, compared with intact married families, children from single-parent homes are:

  • More than twice as likely to be arrested for a juvenile crime,
  • Twice as likely to be treated for emotional and behavioral problems,
  • Roughly twice as likely to be suspended or expelled from school
  • A third more likely to drop out before completing high school.
  • Three times more likely to end up in jail by the time they reach age 30

Is it culture or race?  77% of black babies are born to single moms. 

Since the beginning of the War on Poverty, less-educated mothers have increasingly become married to the welfare state and to the U.S. taxpayer rather than to the fathers of their children. The anti-marriage penalties are harmful to mothers, fathers, children, and society at large. Encourage policymakers to reduce welfare’s anti-marriage penalties incrementally.   Heritage Foundation