Welfare Reform Implementation in Puerto Rico: A Status Report
Ramírez, Ph.D., Norma Boujouen
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With the five-year time limit for receipt of public assistance approaching and the state of the Puerto Rico economy showing signs of a significant slowdown, the National Council of La Raza (NCLR) has undertaken a review of welfare reform implementation on the island. This report begins with a socioeconomic profile of Puerto Rico to provide the current context and public climate in which welfare reform implementation is occurring. It then reviews relevant details about the administration of the TANF program on the island. Next, it addresses caseload composition and changes between 1990 and 1999, and also examines employment issues affecting TANF participants. The report concludes by offering a preliminary assessment of welfare reform in Puerto Rico and outlining the next steps for researchers and analysts to consider. The Appendix provides an overview of welfare reform and the major provisions of the law that are the focus of this discussion, as well as a listing of the delegate agencies that provide case management services to TANF recipients.