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Abstract

Food assistance programs play an important role in meeting the basic needs of low income households. This paper examines the interaction among food stamps, labor force participation and food insecurity status of low-income households under different program design and economic conditions. A simultaneous equation model with three probit equations links the program, work force participation and outcome. Results based on the Survey of Program Dynamics data suggest that Food Stamp Program participation is more responsive to changes in the program benefits than to changes in unemployment rate or nonlabor income; food insecurity status is more responsive to changes in the food program benefit or unemployment rate, than to nonlabor income.

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