Skip to contentNational Women's Law Center

5 Public Programs That Lift Millions of Women Out of Poverty

Did you know that in 2011, Social Security kept 11.7 million women and 1.1 million children out of poverty?

This is just one new fact that we can calculate today thanks to the release of new Census Bureau data that examines a supplemental poverty measure which takes into account the impact of public programs on families' economic security. For more about poverty measurement, see our FAQ.

This past September, the Census Bureau released the official poverty numbers for 2011, which showed that women's poverty remained high after the recession's end, but was beginning to stabilize in 2011. Our report detailed what the numbers looked like and the trends over time. But what we didn't get to see in that data was how many people were pulled above the poverty line by specific public programs. Today, we were able to take a closer look at how many people were lifted out of poverty by these programs and who they were.

Here are five effective programs that lifted families' incomes above the official poverty line in 2011:

  1. Social Security lifted over 21.4 million people out of poverty in 2011:
    • Almost 14.5 million people 65 and older, including 8.7 million women;
    • More than 5.8 million adults 18-64, including more than 3.0 million women; and
    • 1.1 million children.
  2. The Earned Income Tax Credit (EITC), which helps  low- and moderate-income working families, lifted the incomes of almost 5.7 million people above the poverty line:
    • More than 2.6 million adults 18 and older, including almost 1.6 million women; and
    • Almost 3.1 million children.
  3. The Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP, formerly Food Stamps) lifted the incomes of almost 3.9 million people above the poverty line:
    • 327,000 people 65 and older, including 213,000 women;
    • Almost 1.9 million adults 18-64, including 1.1 million women; and
    • 1.7 million children.
  4. Unemployment Insurance kept 2.3 million people from falling into poverty in 2011. This is due in large part to federally funded benefits to help long-term jobless workers.
    • This included 833,000 women 18 and older and 621,000 children.
  5. Supplemental Security Income (SSI) lifted more than 2.0 million people out of poverty:
    • 368,000 people 65 and older, including 245,000 women;
    • Over 1.3 million adults 18-64, including 682,000 women; and
    • 311,000 children.

In the next few months Congress is going to be facing a number of critical choices. Will Congress start making the richest two percent pay their fair share of taxes — or will it cut programs that women and their families depend on? We can't allow stealth cuts to Social Security or let Congress end the 2009 improvements to the Earned Income Tax Credit and Child Tax Credit. SNAP helps families put healthy food on the table in tough times and cuts would hamper the abilities of families to meet their most basic needs. As we continue to see record numbers of long-term unemployed workers, 2 million workers and their families can't afford to lose Unemployment Insurance benefits at the end of December. And, the stealth benefit cut that threatens Social Security would cut SSI benefits even more deeply.

These programs work — and we can't allow Congress to cut the programs that lift women and their families out of poverty.


car repair shop

This is a great post. I like topic.This site has lots of advantage.I found many interesting things from this site. It helps me in many ways.Thanks for posting this repair shop

mouth guard

You have done a great job. I will definitely dig it and personally recommend to my friends. I am confident they will be benefited from this site.mouth guard

Easily, the article is

Easily, the article is actually the best topic on this registry related issue. I fit in with your conclusions and will eagerly look forward to your next updates. Just saying thanks will not just be sufficient, for the fantasti c lucidity in your writing. I will instantly grab your rss feed to stay informed of any updates.


I would like to thank you for the efforts you have made in writing this article. I am hoping the same best work from you in the future as well. In fact your creative writing abilities has inspired me to start my own BlogEngine blog now. Really the blogging is spreading its wings rapidly. Your write up is a fine example of it.
bruce krahn trouble spot training video reviews


Took me time to read all the comments, but I really enjoyed the article. It proved to be Very helpful to me and I am sure to all the commenters here! It’s always nice when you can not only be informed, but also entertained!
jason capital love code book reviews

I gotta favorite this

I gotta favorite this website it seems very helpful .
best anti aging skin care

Best work you have done, this

Best work you have done, this online website is really cool with great facts.
how to get rid of wrinkles

Hey There. I found your blog

Hey There. I found your blog using msn. This is a very well written article. I’ll be sure to bookmark it and come back to read more of your useful info. Thanks for the post. I’ll definitely return.
dark circles around eyes

I read your blog frequently

I read your blog frequently and I just thought I’d say keep up the amazing work!
mobile payments


women you can job and million dollar industry Harga besi wf and all the think that you do man come on

Easily, the article is

Easily, the article is actually the best topic on this registry related issue. I fit in with your conclusions and will eagerly look forward to your next updates. check my source

I’m wondering how I could be

I’m wondering how I could be notified whenever a new post has been made. I have subscribed to your feed which must do the trick! Have a great day! blog here

I’m wondering how I could be

I’m wondering how I could be notified whenever a new post has been made. I have subscribed to your feed which must do the trick! Have a great day! click here to investigate

This less expensive wood can

This less expensive wood can be ruined to look much like more expensive woodlands like walnut and cherry. look here

This substance has been known

This substance has been known to cause breast malignancies, beginning problems of infants, neurodevelopmental issues of infants, infertility issues, interruptions of the reproduction and bronchial asthma strikes. There is even a link between DBP and being overweight. browse around this site

During the early stages of

During the early stages of this recession, feminists had a skip in their step when it was revealed men bore the brunt of job losses. But with a dwindling primary and secondary sector. truth about cellulite joey atlas pdf reviews

Interesting topic for a blog.

Interesting topic for a blog. I have been searching the Internet for fun and came upon your website. Fabulous post. Thanks a ton for sharing your knowledge! It is great to see that some people still put in an effort into managing their websites. I'll be sure to check back again real soon.

The HSV Eraser book is only available online through author Dr. Christine Buehler's website and is NOT sold through Amazon, Barnes and Noble, or other traditional book sellers.

txb at www facebook

Welcome to the Text Your Ex Back Michael Fiore Facebook page. We're just getting started and are excited to share some amazing texting tips and techniques that can help you get your ex back after a breakup. Connect with us from the very beginning by liking this page.txb at www facebook

press release

Well-known and highly popular relationship coach, Michael Fiore, recently announced his much-anticipated Language of Desire formula will be released in early 2014. Mike did not provide an exact date, but the program has been in the works for a while now, so I fully expect to see it within the first few months of the new release

A report published by the

A report published by the U.S. Census Bureau suggests that increasingly Americans are giving up their battle to remain afloat in an economic climate that refuses to recover. According to the report, there are more Americans residing under the poverty line than ever in the 52-year history of the Census Bureau reports. Behind the increasing interconnectedness promised by globalization are global decisions, policies, and practices. These are typically influenced, driven, or formulated by the rich and powerful. These can be leaders of rich countries or other global actors such as multinational corporations, institutions, and influential people. That means more Americans are needing payday loans just to get by.

Saw Palmetto

I may have had a bad product. By the way, where does one find a successful, stable, democratic non-capitalistic society? Planned economies don't work. What happen here is what I keep wondering? I've always praised Amazon for wonderful quality control and customer service. My only disappointment is the absence of many of my favorites that were not included. Saw Palmetto More accurate compare with temporal thermometer. It's a cable, it works like any cable should. It will inspire u!!! Everyone should read this book!! Buy this great book you will be blessed and bless others. Never heard of this author before. I use this brand of ink exclusively for my 5 printers. Great solution for taking a shower and not getting cast wet. Randwick Saw Palmetto. Prostate Cancer Lymph Node Drainage Learn more


i used to use wax and suger which used to take longer time and sometimes i go for shaving if i am in hurry and the hair is short to be waxed. I don't think that Tivoli or BA produce the same sound quality, but what good is great sound if you can't access it? Whoever made the choice to 86 built in controls is a fool or an obsessive compulsive. I will never use anything else. Going 2 weeks on the scoopfree with no problems. Chlorella
I have had two of these. My daughter likes to pick which color she is going to use each night, and it almost turns something you think will be horrible into a game. I wanted a point and shoot without all the fanfare. It plays pretty loud for such a small box. Doesn't hold heat much and definitely does'nt freeze or hold cold. I consider myself an average sleeper that tried the mask (because I tried one before in months gone by) to have that more refreshed, energized feeling since I don't have those vices like coffee or 5-hour energy. Chlorella. Chlorella Zusammensetzung Visit site


I already dad an original heat pad, but it was getting old and a small hole. One thing I liked about this product was the ingredients did not appear to be harmful in any way. It is easy to use, good for a newbie juicer type. The reviews convinced me to buy, and the review suggesting the short leg cast for a foot bandage was right on and much appreciated. glutathione
I think the best thing people can do is to wait and see if your cat will accept the change, we think you will be very happy if they do! Each increment is approximately enough to make one ounce of espresso. The lubricating properties of the cleaning solution really do enhance the shavers performance. My bottom line - you can certainly buy a better center channel speaker. Why? Because it's quiet (compared to my old Remington), and gives me smooth, dry close shaves. Not to get too personal...but this stuff is amazing. glutathione. How To Use Glutathione For Skin Whitening Visit site

Diabetes Diet

Planning a trip to Northern Cali this summer so this Benchmark will be indispensable to make that happen. It fits even in the smallest pocket of your camera bag. Great for plugging straight into the tv for music if you aren't hooked up to AirPlay. A few months ago I noticed the LED light on the front of my Smart Oven was getting dim. Diabetes Diet
really keeps their interest up. I wanted the series 7, but went with the series 5 due to price (about $60 difference). It has all the features that make a waffle iron easy to use: Locking mechanism so it doesn't inadvertently open up; set darkness dial and it rings gently to inform you waffle is done (and it''s just the way I want it); no butter or oil needed cuz waffles do not stick; heats up quickly; easy to store either horizontally or vertically. It worked and we are really enjoying it. After having 3 children and breast feeding I was unlucky to be left with saggy lifeless breasts and being a young mom this was a heavy blow to my self esteem and sex life. Thank you, Fran Hurst Diabetes Type 2. Medtronic Diabetes Australia Click here

Poverty/Extreme Poverty

While SSI/SSDI, EITC, SNAP and unemployment insurance are definitely much needed programs, I think it is misleading to say that they help to lift people out of poverty. They can, and do, lift people out of EXTREME poverty but if you're familiar with the federal poverty levels then you know that those levels are extremely low.
I utilized EITC and SNAP while raising my two kids as a single parent. Those programs kept me from extreme poverty, but we were definitely still living in poverty!
More recently, unemployment insurance, while it lasted, kept me from becoming homeless - but not out of poverty.
I've had many clients (when I was employed) who received SSI benefits - and all of them were dealing with extreme poverty. The majority of the people that I see at the local mental health drop in center have SSI and SNAP, and still live in extreme poverty.
I don't want to see ANY of these programs suffer from cuts because, after all, poverty is an improvement over the extreme. But I would also like to see more emphasis put on education as a path out of poverty and on creating a program that makes collection of unpaid child support a priority.

Post new comment