Employment and Training
Anyone receiving TANF (cash assistance) and able to work must participate in employment or training programs for 30-40 hours each week. Most recipients complete an initial job search at their neighborhood EARN Center, which stands for Employment, Advancement, and Retention Network. With help from EARN Center staff, recipients determine which programs will help them find a job, given their individual work history, skills, and education. There are nine EARN Centers throughout Philadelphia.
Once a TANF recipient finds a job, they still have to figure out if their wages will be enough to support their family with the added expenses of childcare and transportation. TANF recipients who secure employment may receive reduced cash assistance and SNAP (food stamp) benefits, and remain eligible for Medicaid for up to one year.
State employment and training funds were cut by nearly 50% in Pennsylvania's fiscal year 2012 budget, forcing many effective programs across the state to close their doors. Tell your state legislators that the best way to help families leave welfare is to help prepare them for good jobs by funding meaningful training and education opportunities in their communities.