Moving Up Is A Steep Climb

Parents’ Work and Children’s Welfare in the Annie E. Casey Foundation’s Jobs Initiative

By the Annie E. Casey Foundation

April 20, 2002


Researchers spent 18 months following families to better understand how parental employment intersects with child well-being. Their study focused on 10 low-income families from two Jobs Initiative sites — Seattle and Milwaukee. The goal? Learn how workforce development impacts a parent’s job mobility and if this mobility — or lack thereof — affects their kids.

Launched in 1995, Casey’s Jobs Initiative aimed to connect inner-city adults to family-supporting jobs and improve the way urban labor markets worked for low-income, low-skilled workers. The eight-year initiative was active in six cities across the country.

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Key Takeaway

In helping low-income parents become financially secure, one thing is clear: It takes time

This study found that Jobs Initiative parents still weren’t earning family-supporting incomes after three years of hard, steady work. Equally important: Their kids needed a similar amount of time to overcome existing academic, family and financial challenges.

Findings & Stats

Statements & Quotations