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Highlights

With the Temporary Assistance for Needy Families (TANF) program taking effect in 1997, child care assistance became a significant strategy for helping welfare recipients move into the workforce and for helping other low-income families stay off welfare. Since 1997, states have used federal funds from the Child Care and Development Fund (CCDF) and TANF along with state funds to expand child care assistance programs. However, given the current budget problems in most states and the competing demands for TANF and state funds, it is possible that states have changed their child care policies and the availability of child care assistance to low-income families.

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