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The United States and Single Parent Families - Essay Example

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Thirty years of research conclusively shows its harm to children in virtually every measure. Studies support marital longevity as a vital component of good health for children and adults alike.2
The policies in the United States are similar to Canadian policies because they offer incentives and social welfare programs to poor divorced parents to enable them to be involved in the lives of their children. The United States recent policy has been to give bonuses to married people especially if they are poor. Under the administration of George Bush, the policies in the United States favor marriage and often blame divorce for poverty itself. The US has provided bonuses to welfare recipients who marry through cash incentives and tax breaks and many states earmark thousands of dollars for marriage education, "On February 26, 2002, President Bush called for spending up to $300 million a year to promote marriage among poor people."3 The question is whether or not throwing money at the poor will ensure marriage, and also whether those marriages will be better for the children than the parents being apart. These policies are along the same lines as the policies in Canada, but do they work Does throwing money at the situation help, or is it wasted on uneducated people who will just remain in poverty and bring up children who will also be poor
Method
By researching both the Canadian4 and American5 policies it is determined that they are very similar. Both focus on social welfare programs which give aid to poor people. Both offer education programs for the poor, and both policies encourage involvement by all of the parents whether or not they are married. It is also evident that these programs do not work because both countries still face the battle of child poverty.
History of Policy
Campaign 2000 in Canada proposed ending child poverty in Canada by the year 2000. They proposed multiple solutions to the problem of poverty such as providing good jobs, increasing the child income benefit, ensuring early learning and child care are offered, and that affordable housing is available to those who need it.6 Their website lists the goals of the program as:
1. We must raise and protect the basic living standards of families in all regions of the country so that no child in Canada must ever live in poverty*.
2. We must improve the life chances of all children in Canada to fulfill their potential and nurture their talent, and to become responsible and contributing members of Canadian society.
3. We must ensure the availability of secure, affordable, and suitable housing as an inherent right of all children in Canada.
4. We must create, build and strengthen family support, child care and community-based resources to empower families to provide the best possible care for their children.7
During the 1960's the United States declared it would attempt to rid the entire country of poverty and create a "great society":
The Johnson Administration's anti-poverty policies were designed to create a "great society" by eradicating poverty. In addition to expanding social security, and a number of programs were created, including the Head Start program to give disadvantaged children extra help before they entered school; the Job Corps program to train high school dropouts; the Teachers Corps program; the Volunteers in Service to ...Show more
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Summary

The United States, like the rest of the world, would ideally like to have a country full of married people with children. Unfortunately, that is not the case with over 50% of marriages in the US ending in divorce.1 Children often suffer greatly from the impact of their parent's divorce…
The United States and Single Parent Families
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