In the absence of social safety net programs, it is estimated that the [2013-15] child poverty rate would have been 14 percentage points higher [from 23%] and the deep poverty rate 13 percentage points higher [from 5%] during this period.
Children in Poverty - California Poverty Measure, by Age Group (California Only)
Participation in the Women, Infants and Children program (WIC) leads to healthier babies, more nutritious diets for families, better health care for children, and higher academic achievement for students.
Safety net programs generally supplement earnings to help families avoid severe economic need. These programs—which include cash assistance, nutrition assistance, housing subsidies, and low-income tax credits—make up 44 percent of poor families’ resources statewide and substantially mitigate poverty.
“In a family with two working parents earning low wages, each parent would have to work 147 hours per week to avoid paying more than the federally recommended 7% of income on the cost of child care for their infant.”
The High Cost of Child Care Underscores the Need for Supporting Families With Children of All Ages
“Parents and caregivers are a child’s first exposure to the world around them. The quality of relationships between children and their parents and caregivers, and the environment in which those relationships develop, play a significant role in a child’s cognitive, emotional, physical, and social development.”
Essentials for Childhood: Creating Safe, Stable, Nurturing Relationships and Environments
“[P]ublic investment in housing—including housing for homeless families and rental assistance for food-insecure families—improves the health outcomes of vulnerable infants and young children and lowers health care spending.”
1 in 2 children in California get health care through Medicaid. Medicaid allows 4.63 million Californian kids -- who would not otherwise have access to health care -- to see doctors when they get sick and to get the vaccinations and screenings they need to stay healthy.
“When parents identify, seek, and receive respectful and timely concrete support in times of need, this helps to ensure they and their children receive the basic necessities everyone deserves in order to grow [. . .]”
The Strengthening Families Approach and Protective Factors Framework: Branching Out and Reaching Deeper