Mother-Only Families:

Low Earnings Will Keep Many Children in Poverty

HRD-91-62: Published: Apr 2, 1991. Publicly Released: Apr 2, 1991.

Additional Materials:

Contact:

Office of Public Affairs
(202) 512-4800
youngc1@gao.gov

GAO reviewed data about mother-only families and the problems they faced in escaping poverty, focusing on how government policy could improve the prospects for self-sufficiency.

GAO found that: (1) many single mothers would remain near or below the poverty line, even if they worked full-time, due to lack of education and work experience; (2) most women with young children did not work full-time year-round; (3) problems single mothers faced included low earnings, vulnerability to layoffs, lack of such fringe benefits as paid sick leave and health insurance, and high child care costs; (4) to escape from poverty, the majority of poor single mothers would need either supplementary income sources or job training; and (5) the 1990 legislative expansion of the earned income tax credit and child care subsidies could increase the percentage of poor families that live without welfare services.

Oct 19, 2020

Sep 23, 2020

Aug 31, 2020

Jun 29, 2020

Jun 16, 2020

May 1, 2020

Apr 30, 2020

  • tax icon, source: Eyewire

    Priority Open Recommendations:

    Internal Revenue Service
    GAO-20-548PR: Published: Apr 23, 2020. Publicly Released: Apr 30, 2020.

Apr 1, 2020

Mar 2, 2020

Feb 26, 2020

Looking for more? Browse all our products here