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Wider Opportunities for Women

1325 G Street NW, LL Washington, DC 20005 202/638-3143

Contact: Diana PearceDiana Pearce of Wilder Opportunities for Women's (WOW) Women and Poverty Project has been conducting ,research on the extent to which "doubling-up" disguises poverty and impacts an entire range of issues related to welfare, employment and housing conditions, with emphasis on their effect on the lives of women and people of color. Preliminary findings, based on analysis of Current Population Survey data, suggest that poor families who share housing with other families often find their poverty hidden within the larger household. Families and households are distinct configurations for determining economic status. WOW has used portions of this research in their current efforts to impact national welfare reform proposals and to create an understanding among policy makers and advocates of the connections between comprehensive welfare reform and housing policy. As an illustration, WOW recently succeeded in encouraging the Department of Health and Human Services to consider amending current regulations to allow states to continue AFDC support to mothers whose children are in foster care. This ensures that the mother will not lose her housing, and the children will have a home to which they can return. Together with a group of housing, women's and children's advocacy organizations, WOW has also outlined a series of housing-related recommendations for the Clinton Administration's Working Group on Welfare Reform.
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