Welfare is the known as the provision of least required level of wellbeing and social assistance for general public. The developed countries like United States, welfare is mostly being offered by the government which is not part of charities, religious groups, informal social groups, and other intergovernmental organizations. Welfare basically replaces the term of "charity", as has been known for thousands of years, which is the voluntary act of helping. Welfare may have various forms like subsidies, monetary payments and housing. Welfare can be granted through government or nongovernmental organizations or by both. There are various social assistance programs which get funded by government through social insurance models. Welfare systems are unique for each country however welfare is usually for jobless, ill, disable, elderly and people with dependent children etc .
During the last thirty years, the institutions of the United States to train people for jobs have grown in quantity as well as quality. High schools which are the conventionalcentre of professional educationthat provide some job related education, howeverprofessional education is under taken increasingly in higher education institutions, including schools in the area of professional training, community colleges and technical schools (Grubb, 1995). The foundation of job training programs was through labor programs in 1960s and later in the Comprehensive Employment and Training Act (CETA) in the 1970. There were some other acts approved by government such as the Job Training Partnership Act (JTPA) in 1980s, coupled with the number of job training in the welfare system. These programs included the Job Opportunities and Basic Skills training (JOBS) program of Family Support Act of 1988 (Barnow, 1986).
In 1981, the Reagan administration built a record of "welfare-to-work" programs that enforced welfare beneficiaries to work in for grants. States were also allowed to develop local programs to support welfare beneficiaries in getting back to work. The result of this permission was that the program among the states had large variations. These programs mostly focused on job search for those welfare beneficiaries who were unemployed. These programs were not quite effective due to the reasons that these programs did not train for the job so those getting jobs through these programs got laid off eventually due to in-experience, and unskilled expertise (Sewell, 1971). These job search programs provided very short term job placements. There were some other programs by states in which the welfare beneficiaries had to do some community service according to their grants. These programs were known as Community Work Experience Programs (CWEPs) which are in line with the traditional concept of workfare. The practice of such programs led to community services and “welfare-to-work” concepts. So these programs were not aimed at providing any training to enable the welfare beneficiaries to get back to normal job and retain it.
Various programs were initiated in response to more particular problems. For instance, numerous programs provide support particularly for veterans due to the reason that generally disabled veterans find it difficult to enter in to labor force. Furthermore, dislocated worker programs were initiated due to the special requirement for experienced workers getting laid off not by their own fault and various other types of employment and professional programs were focused to providing employment to disabled persons (Friedlander. Burtless, 1995). It has been observed that there is a strong inclination of Congress towards responding to newer issues by newer programs rather than embedding changes in the old programs. This inclination has increased associated cost effects however it has provided propagation of job training programs having similar goals of enhancing the employment by addressing the issues of unique groups with unique nature of issues associated with each of them (Alan M. Harshey).
A large number of experimental programs have been initiated by both private foundations and government institutions aimed at testingsome specific approaches for enhancement of employment. Few of such programs have been especially more effective than traditional job search programs. These programs include various job training programs including On-Job-Training (OJT) (Andrew J. Cherlin). These programs may provide accurate information on the effectiveness of job training programs to help people get off welfare by obtaining a suitable job. These programs are very well designed and are completely independent from any sort of political exploitation. The working of government job training programs a quite different from nongovernmental programs but the effectiveness of both of these is similar as mentioned in subsequent section.
Various recent developments in the field of job training to help people get off welfare includethe Family Support Act of 1988. This act requires all states to increase the employment rate of welfare beneficiaries through establishing job training programs. This act includes a variety of services which include job search, providing work experience, career counseling, child care, assistance services, corrective education, professional education, and training. This new actis an effort of combining the services strategy of 1960s with the work-related emphasis of WIN which includes education and training as a hybrid model (Lavitta).
The concept of providing support services like education and training to help welfare beneficiaries get off welfare started in 1962. These programs were in addition to the voluntary community work programs in 1960s. These programs are known as welfare-to-work programs. These programs got the welfare beneficiaries out of their comfort zone and helped them to get jobs. As governor of California, Ronald Reagan founded a Community Work Experience Program (CWEP) which was aimed at taking community work from welfare beneficiaries. The extent of community work was according to the received grants. This CWEP program in California got failed completely due to the fact that only 0.2% of total welfare beneficiaries got enrolled under this program. It completely failed to achieve every single objective which was set initially. Contrary to the facts, Reagan always stated that this program was a big success and pressed the need of expansion of welfare-to-work programs. Reagan emphasized that community work is better than education and job training. However during Reagan’s presidency various education and job training programs were also initiated to reduce the welfare population which clearly shows the effectiveness of these programs over the welfare-to-work programs (Welfare-to-Work Programs - History Of Workfare) .
A common pattern of experimenting social programs can be seen in United States which show encouraging level of development in small scales rather than implementing directly at wide scales. The history of job training programs can be considered as these minor development experiments. The initial programs of 1960s were consequently institutionalized as CETA and then JTPA.
Another important program was implemented by the government which is known as workfare. This program required the welfare beneficiaries to do some specific amount of work in order to continue to receive their grants. These works are usually a combination of various activities which are aimed at improving the skills of the individuals in order to bring them to such a level that will increase chances for them to get suitable jobs. There are similar programs in Australia and Canada which have initiated various controversies and debates. Workfare is known as Work First in Netherland which is fundamentally based on the Wisconsin Works Program of United States. These implementation of workfare programs in other countries imply that the workfare programs are to some extent effective in achieving results.
Workfare has two broad categories, one consists of those programs which motivate people for direct employment and get the people off welfare by bringing them directly into working status. The other category of programs is the one in which the intention is to increase the workforce through training and educating the people who are on welfare. The second category of programs have proven to be much more effective than the first one. For this reason today’s governments of various countries including United States are implementing job training programs rather than welfare-to-work programs (Gilbert, 1994).
Almost similar techniques are being implemented to overcome poverty to help labor class by facilitating through temporary employment during the months of tight job market. For example NREGA working actively in India offers a paid employment for 100 days for competitive and eligible candidates. Such programs foster the moral of educated people when they are not able to find job according to their qualification due to economical or financial problems in marketplace (Kosterlitz, 1989).
This is a fruitful approach first practiced back in 1968 to tackle unemployment and frustration among educated citizens. President Bill Clinton introduces this program to take people off from welfare amount and to roll out an effective plan to significantly encourage people in productive activities. Trainee programs provide a best solution to motivate and financially support unemployed people by helping them to earn a substantial amount of money while learning about the job responsibilities at a very initial level. These programs help candidates to learn skills and marketable abilities that are favorably required by the government (Burtless). Most of the organizations induct candidates at a very initial stage and therefore trainee programs provide a significant platform for the individual to learn skills and concepts accordingly by working at entry level. Once a trainee shows satisfactory performance organization properly offers a job position and a career progression. Mostly the federal institutes float new opening via their official website (Cauvin).
It happens mostly that people being supported through welfare programs lose the sight of it’s actually purpose and tend to rely on this income completely that leaves them with a lay back approach towards obtaining a proper job position in any prestigious organization. The theme of these programs is to help people is to help them during their unemployment era and to motivate them to find an appropriate job at earliest possible (Sewell, 1971). People started to make negative use of such welfare programs and thought of it as a regular source of income at their doorstep which is actually not the idea behind such programs. Such programs also discourages and create resentment in the heart of working class as 20% of their salary got deducted to support the unemployed population of the society .People feel dejected to see their counterparts doing good for nothing and living a comfortable life on their hard earned money. The whole idea of the welfare programs actually lost its essence because of such socially dependent loafers. There is a strong need to clearly distinguish between the abusers of the system and those who are actually needy and are unemployed due to any reason. People who are not employed have ethical obligations to contribute towards society by other means. Programs should be carefully designed to reduce the dependency of maximum number of people on welfare income and maximum number of ways should be generated to help them get back on their own earning (Burghardt. Gordon, 1990).
Charles Murray argues about the policy of American society does not take into account the inherent ability of individuals to avoid stress and hard work. Such welfare assistance also prevented people from doing any regular work, or to get children in marriage. A new idea emerges and proved to be very helpful for the people and the state. This approach was anticipated to reduce long term reliance of unemployed people and establishes the concept of welfare to work scheme (Pinkey, 2012). JOBS was one of those incentive activities aimed to provide favorable job opportunities and training for basic set of skills. The basic motive was to help teenage mother who were availing welfare income for last more than five years. JOBS got failed to due to lack of sufficient resources and financial support from the government. Later a new approach EITC was introduced in 1990, to facilitate low middle class families to help them remain consistent with their work. Child daycare facility was also given to families to help them continue with their job especially single mothers. Currently government is placing a considerable emphasis o different training programs to help people to acquire required and desired set of skills in order to get hired by private and government agencies. Such training programs are a great support for unskilled individual to get competitive expertise and find appropriate job in the marketplace. Such programs discourage people from depending on welfare money for longer period of time and reduce the financial burden on government budget. The purpose of all such type of plans is to help public to remain I working class by supporting them other than welfare means (Levy. Frank. Richard, 1990).
Conclusion and recommendations
Overall, the outcomes from approximately thirty years of assessing job training programs are extraordinarily consistent, given the difference in the types of programs that have been reinforced and the variances in the methods of evaluation. A large number of job training programs lead to improved pays, and the welfares usually compensate the costs. Though the growths in pays are reasonable by almost any criteria, hence inadequate to lift those enrolled in such programs out of poverty. The Welfare-to-work programs also enhance employment rate and minimize the amount of welfare, but they seldom permit individuals to leave welfare. Additionally, any assistances probably weaken after four to five years. The job training programs do not appear to put many persons on career routes with continued pays increases, as recognized schooling does.
The additional serious problem is that the variances which can be noticed did not fall into any real outline. Some of the variances confirm the deduction that the least job ready persons, or those with the highest barriers to employment, got benefit the most:
Persons receiving welfare got benefit more than those not on welfare, and those on welfare for large number of years than those on welfare for a shorter period of time.
Persons who operated less than 16 weeks in the year prior to the program got benefit more than those with less work experience.
Though, other outcomes recommended than the most job willing individuals benefited the most:
Hispanic persons, to be non-English speaking and having low levels of education got benefit less than others.
Persons with a high school diploma got benefit more than those without it.
Persons who earned $5/hour or more in their previous job got benefit more than those with lower pays or no employment.
Persons with a spouse present got benefit significantly than those having no spouse present and with a child under six.
Persons getting no welfare got benefit more than individuals on welfare.
Persons with family income of $6,000 per year or more got benefit more than ones having less per year income.
The overall effects of job training programs can be summarized as that they have been playing better role getting welfare recipients back to work than the previously practiced programs like workfare and welfare-to-work. These programs are present in various forms in various states but can be made a part of one unique program that enable management of all states to get the same results throughout the country. The final product of job training program should not only cover all the benefits of existing programs but also avoid the weaknesses to possible extents.
The job training programs seem to be a good substitute of the previous programs like workfare but still needs some improvements like making it compulsory for all recipients of welfare grants to get enrolled with such programs. Necessary steps must be taken to bring more and more welfare recipients under the job training programs.
Job training programs not only help the individuals to get suitable jobs but also help them develop skills that are required to retain the job. The overall effect remains an improvement in the existing structure of workfare and welfare-to-work programs. The end product of job training programs must also address the suitability in choosing the training field for the individuals. Experts may be tasked to guide the individuals in choosing the best profession for them if they have never worked. And if they have already worked but got laid off then suitable measure can be taken. For instance if the individual was laid off due to his/her unskilled attitude then he/she must be trained to become better worker but if he/she was laid off due to recession etc. suitable switch of field or location should be suggested along with some training of the field.
In the end it can be stated accurately that the current job training programs have been playing a vital role in getting people off welfare and start working to earn money by themselves. These programs have been very much effective and efficient than those which were present in the past. These programs can be further improved to get better results and improve employment rate of the country. These programs can be implemented at smaller scale at first and then can be expanded to larger scales. Suggestions must also be taken from general public while improving these programs.
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