Subject: Studies in the News 03-55 (August 28, 2003)


CALIFORNIA RESEARCH BUREAU
CALIFORNIA STATE LIBRARY
Studies in the News:
Children and Family Supplement


Contents This Week

Introductory Material CRIMINAL JUSTICE & LAW ENFORCEMENT
   Violence in children's lives
   Caring for children of arrested parents
EDUCATION
   Appropriate assessments in early education
   Standards for child care
   Early childhood mathematics policies
   Universal preschool and future success
   Handbook of survey methods
   Head Start and the Administration's proposal
   Libraries and youth development
   School improvement and leadership
   Special education students and postsecondary education
HEALTH
   Health of children in California
   Well-being of children
   State policies for healthy families
   Health insurance and families
   Cultural competency and children's mental health
   Medicaid and mental health care
   Child exposure to environmental tobacco smoke
   Financing vaccines
   Women's access to health coverage and care
HUMAN SERVICES
   Issues with culture and caregiving goals
   Time spent in child care and behavior
   Child care attendance and behavior
   Low-income children
   Well-being of California's children
   Recommendations on child welfare
   Low-income families and economic self-sufficiency
   Child care and community development partnerships
   Illinois TANF families and work requirements
   Welfare-to-work in Los Angeles
   Low-income families and welfare reform
STUDIES TO COME
   Milk fat and asthma
   Environmental exposures and asthma
Introduction to Studies in the News

Studies in the News is a very current compilation of items significant to the Legislature and Governor's Office. It is created weekly by the State Library's Research Bureau to supplement the public policy debate in California’s Capitol. To help share the latest information with state policymakers, these reading lists are now being made accessible through the State Library’s website. This week's list of current articles in various public policy areas is presented below.

Service to State Employees:

  • When available, the URL for the full text of each item is provided.

  • Items in the State Library collection can be checked out to state officials and staff.

  • Access to all materials listed will be provided by the State Information Reference Center, either by e-mail to cslsirc@library.ca.gov or by calling 654-0261.

The following studies are currently on hand:

CRIMINAL JUSTICE & LAW ENFORCEMENT

CHILDREN & YOUTH

Violence in the Lives of Children: [Issue Theme.] By Brett V. Brown and Sharon Bzostek, Child Trends. CrossCurrents; Issue 1. (Child Trends Data Bank, Washington, DC) August 2003. 13 p.

Full Text at: www.childtrendsdatabank.org/PDF/Violence.pdf

["This publication takes a crosscutting look at the incidence of many different forms of violence affecting children and youth in America, including exposure to media violence, severe spanking, domestic violence and child abuse, fighting and bullying, and homicide and suicide."]

[Request #S8923]

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Children of Arrested Parents: Strategies to Improve Their Safety and Well-Being. By Clare M. Nolan, University of California, Berkeley. Prepared for the California Research Bureau, California State Library. (The Bureau, Sacramento, California) July 2003. 54 p.

Full Text at: www.library.ca.gov/crb/03/11/03-011.pdf

["This report examines, from a practice and policy perspective, issues pertinent to the safety and well-being of children affected by the arrest of a custodial parent. It focuses particularly on families where either the sole or both custodial parents have been arrested, and there is no evidence of child abuse, neglect or abandonment. Such evidence triggers a system of mandated response by law enforcement, child welfare agencies, and the courts."]

[Request #S8924]

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EDUCATION

ASSESSMENT

Child Assessment at the Preprimary Level: Expert Opinion and State Trends. By Carol Horton and Barbara T. Bowman, Erikson Institute. (The Institute, Chicago, Illinois) 2003. 28 p.

Full Text at: www.erikson.edu/files/nonimages/horton-bowman.pdf

["The growing focus on early childhood education has focused attention on what makes for good child assessment and program evaluation at the pre-primary level. This report finds that early childhood experts generally agree on the usefulness of informal, non-intrusive assessments, such as portfolios, teacher observations and parent evaluations. According to the experts, screening for disabilities and developmental delays should be conducted annually and supplemented by ongoing teacher observations. Experts agree that standardized tests should not be used with preschoolers, except for program evaluation purposes. A second survey explores what state-funded pre-kindergarten programs across the country are doing to assess children." Connect for Kids (August 11, 2003).]

[Request #S8925]

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EARLY CHILDHOOD EDUCATION

Meeting Great Expectations: Integrating Early Education Program Standards in Child Care. By Rachel Schumacher, Center for Law and Social Policy, and others. (The Center, Washington, DC) August 2003.

Full Text at: www.clasp.org/DMS/Documents/1061231790.62/meeting_rpt.pdf

["This report examines three strategies in seven states that have integrated program standards into child care by directly tying standards to funding: the delivery of state pre-kindergarten (Georgia, New Jersey, and New York) and Head Start (Ohio, Oklahoma, and Oregon) in child care settings and the use of contracts including required standards with child care providers (California). These states are requiring participating child care providers to meet early education program standards that routinely exceed those required by state child care licensing rules. They are also providing additional monitoring, technical assistance, and fiscal resources to help participating programs meet these standards."]

Policy Brief. 8 p.:
http://www.clasp.org/Pubs/DMS/Documents/1061231579.27/meeting_brief.pdf

Full Report. 66 p.:
http://www.clasp.org/DMS/Documents/1061231790.62/meeting_rpt.pdf

[Request #S8926]

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State Policies That Promote Early Childhood Mathematics. By the National Association for the Education of Young Children. (The Association, Washington, DC) June 2003. 19 p.

Full Text at: www.naeyc.org/childrens_champions/math_survey.pdf

["This study on state early childhood mathematics policies is based on a survey of state early childhood specialists in departments of education and child care administrators. It covers standards, curriculum and assessment, and professional development." NIEER Online Newsletter (July 25, 2003).]

[Request #S8927]

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Start Early/Succeed Later: The Case for Universal Preschool. By Alexandrina Michel Ramirez. (Educational Leadership and Policy Studies, California State University, Sacramento, California) Spring 2003. 5 p.

Full Text at: jep.csus.edu/journal2003/paper7.htm

["Universal preschool would inject children up front with the necessary skills to succeed in elementary school and beyond, both academically and socially. This solution prevents failure and promotes success. Eventually, monies that are used to remediate students could be refocused on prevention from birth to age 5, resulting in further success. Starting children early on the right road leads to successful children, employed, productive adults and a vibrant economy. In the long run, our investment in our children and their future will save taxpayers money."]

[Request #S8928]

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EDUCATIONAL RESEARCH

NCES (National Center for Education Statistics) Handbook of Survey Methods. By Lori Thurgood and others. NCES 2003-603. (The Center, Washington, DC) 2003. 356 p.

Full Text at: nces.ed.gov/pubs2003/2003603.pdf

["This publication presents explanations of how each survey program in the National Center for Education Statistics (NCES) obtains and prepares the data it publishes. The Handbook aims to provide users of NCES data with the information necessary to evaluate the suitability of the statistics for their needs, with a focus on the methodologies for survey design, data collection, and data processing."]

[Request #S8929]

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HEAD START

Dismantling Head Start: The Case For Saving America's Most Successful Early Childhood Development Program. By the National Head Start Association. (The Association, Alexandria, Virginia) 2003. 17 p.

Full Text at: www.saveheadstart.org/SHS_white_paper_041403.pdf

["Whether intended or not, the Administration's proposal would dismantle, within five years, Head Start’s proven success story and put in its place a hodgepodge of inconsistent and untested state government programs that either will serve fewer children than Head Start does now or will provide less comprehensive services to those children who are served, diverting funds to state administrative costs rather than serving at-risk children, reducing overall standards of quality, and providing no role for the 1.3 million Head Start volunteers, of whom nearly 900,000 are former or current Head Start or Early Head Start parents."]

[Request #S8930]

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LIBRARIES

Public Libraries as Partners in Youth Development: Lessons and Voices from the Field. By Nicole Yohalem and Karen Pittman, The Forum for Youth Investment and the Urban Libraries Council (The Forum, Washington, DC) 2003. 32 p.

Full Text at: www.forumforyouthinvestment.org/papers/publiclibraries.pdf

["The purpose of this report is to capture highlights from the initiative ( Public Libraries as Partners in Youth Development), locate the work that libraries do to support teens in a broader picture of young people's development, and summarize the key challenges and corresponding lessons of the initiative."]

[Request #S8931]

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SCHOOL STANDARDS

Leadership Capacity for Lasting School Improvement. By Linda Lambert. (Association for Supervision and Curriculum Development, Alexandria, Virginia) 2003. 128 p.

["When schools are being hit with staff turnover, budget cuts, and changing priorities, how do you ensure that improvements stick, educators keep learning, and student performance continues to advance? The author answers that question and explains how to sustain a learning community where everyone takes ownership of improvement efforts and acts with a shared sense of purpose." NOTE: Leadership Capacity for Lasting School Improvement is available for 3-day loan.]

[Request #S8932]

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SPECIAL EDUCATION

Special Education: Federal Actions Can Assist States in Improving Postsecondary Outcomes for Youth. By the U.S. General Accounting Office. (The Office, Washington, DC) July 2003. 66 p.

Full Text at: www.gao.gov/new.items/d03773.pdf

["States receive federal funds under the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act to help students with disabilities reach their postsecondary goals and various federal programs offer services that can assist these youth. However, research has documented that youth with disabilities are less likely to transition into postsecondary education and employment."]

[Request #S8933]

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HEALTH

CHILDREN

The Health of Young Children in California. By Moira Inkelas and others. UCLA Center for Health Policy Research and First 5 California. (The Center, Los Angeles, California) July 2003. 100 p.

Full Text at: www.healthpolicy.ucla.edu/pubs/files/first5Report.pdf

["This report describes health outcomes, health access, health and developmental risks, and health promoting behaviors for young children in California. Many of these are associated with differences in the economic characteristics of the child's family, ethnicity, place of residence and insurance coverage. This report focuses on disparities across population groups and interprets what these disparities mean in relation to a child's health, developmental 'trajectory,' and prospects for school readiness."]

[Request #S8934]

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America's Children: Key National Indicators of Well-Being 2003. By Federal Interagency Forum on Child and Family Statistics. (The Forum, Washington, DC) 2003. 161 p.

Full Text at: www.childstats.gov/ac2003/pdf/ac2003.pdf

["This report is a compilation of statistics collected from 20 federal agencies on 25 'key indicators' of children's health and well-being. The report found that while children in the United States have lower death rates and are smoking less, and teenagers have lower birth rates, more children are born with low birthweights and many children are overweight." Kaiser Daily Health Policy Report (July 18, 2003).]

[Request #S8935]

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HEALTH CARE POLICY

Policy Matters: Setting and Measuring Benchmarks for State Policies; Healthy Families: Recommendations for State Policies. By the Center for the Study of Social Policy. (The Center, Washington, DC) July 2003. 66 p.

["This paper presents a framework for policies and policy benchmarks aimed at enhancing the health of families. The framework aims to foster state-level strategic thinking about policies that help families thrive physically and mentally and contributes to a national consensus on policy directions for promoting the health of children and families." NOTE: Policy Matters ... is available for 3-day loan.]

[Request #S8921]

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HEALTH INSURANCE

Preserving Recent Progress on Health Coverage for Children and Families: New Tensions Emerge: A 50 State Update on Eligibility, Enrollment, Renewal and Cost-Sharing Practices in Medicaid and SCHIP. By Donna Cohen Ross and Laura Cox, Center on Budget Policies and Priorities. Prepared for the Kaiser Commission on Medicaid and the Uninsured. (The Center, Washington, DC) July 2003. 81 p.

Full Text at: www.kff.org/content/2003/4125/4125.pdf

["Despite serious state budget shortfalls, the Kaiser Commission reports that health coverage programs for low-income children were protected from severe cuts in most states -- but momentum to simplify enrollment procedures to reach more children has started to reverse, and several states were forced to cut efforts to expand parental eligibility." Connect for Kids (August 4, 2003) 1.]

[Request #S8901]

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MENTAL HEALTH

Getting Started...and Moving On: Planning, Implementing and Evaluating Cultural and Linguistic Competency for Comprehensive Community Mental Health Services for Children and Families. By Tawara D. Goode and Vivian H. Jackson, National Center for Cultural Competence. (The Center, Washington, DC) Summer 2003. 4 p.

["This checklist is one in a series designed to assist organizations and systems of care to develop policies, structures and practices that support cultural and linguistic competence. It focuses on systems of care and organizations concerned with the delivery of services and supports to children and youth with emotional, behavioral and mental disorders and their families. Cultural competence is a key principle that must be integrated within all aspects of systems of care."]

[Request #S8937]

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Making the Right Choices: Reforming Medicaid to Improve Outcomes for People Who Need Mental Health Care. By the National Health Law Program (The Program, Los Angeles, California) 2003. 17 p.

Full Text at: www.healthlaw.org/pubs/200307.Bazelonstudy.pdf

["This report analyzes recent proposals to change Medicaid from the perspective of adults and children with mental illnesses. These proposals have included plans to reduce the array of services that states must provide and to reduce the number of beneficiaries entitled to services by: replacing the current entitlement program with one or more block grants to states; giving states greater flexibility to reduce the benefit package for some or all eligible individuals; permitting states to create separate programs within Medicaid, with a lower level of coverage, higher co-payments and fewer protections for individuals who fall within optional eligibility populations; and more."]

[Request #S8938]

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SMOKING

“U.S. Adult Attitudes and Practices Regarding Smoking Restrictions and Child Exposure to Environmental Tobacco Smoke: Changes in the Social Climate From 2000–2001.” By Robert C. McMillen, Social Science Research Center, Mississippi State University, and others. IN: Pediatrics, vol. 112, no. 1 (July 2003) pp. e55-e60.

Full Text at: pediatrics.aappublications.org/cgi/content/full/112/1/e55

[“The purpose of this article is to report changes in U.S. adult attitudes and practices regarding children’s exposure to ETS (Environmental Tobacco Smoke) from 2000–2001. The data collected by this survey demonstrate that most adults would be likely to support pediatricians’ efforts to reduce ETS exposure and will hopefully serve to encourage such activity.”]

[Request #S8939]

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VACCINES

Financing Vaccines in the 21st Century: Assuring Access and Availability; Report Brief. By the Institute of Medicine. (The Institute, Washington, DC) August 2003. 8 p.

Full Text at: www.iom.edu/includes/DBFile.asp?id=14454

["This report proposes new strategies for assuring access to vaccines and sustaining the supply of current and future vaccines, including a recommendation that an insurance mandate -- combined with a government subsidy and voucher plan to administer all recommended vaccines -- should be pursued, changing the government's role from buying vaccines to assuring immunization."]

[Request #S8940]

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WOMEN

Women's Access to Care: A State-Level Analysis of Key Health Policies. By National Women's Law Center. (The Center, Washington, DC) 2003. 116 p.

Full Text at: www.kff.org/content/2003/3326/3326.pdf

["Too often, access to health care services is an acute problem for women. Nearly one quarter of women report that there was a time in the last year when they needed to see a doctor but did not, and nearly one in five is uninsured. While all health care systems policies affect women, many important decisions affecting women's access to health care are made by state policymakers.... This report details a broad range of state policies that can influence women's access to care and coverage, with a special focus on private insurance, Medicaid, reproductive health, and other public health services."]

[Request #S8941]

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HUMAN SERVICES

CHILD CARE

"Culture and Caregiving: Goals, Expectations, & Conflict: [Issue Theme.]" IN: Zero to Three: National Center for Infants, Toddlers, and Families, vol. 23, no. 5 (May 2003) pp. 1-71.

[Includes: "Caregiver Goals and Societal Expectations;" "From Rocks to Diamonds: Mining the Riches of Diversity for Our Children;" "Talk to Your Baby: Honoring Diversity While Practicing From an Evidence Base;" "Joining American Indian Systems of Care: The Complexities of Culturally Appropriate Practice;" "Cultural Models for Early Caregiving;" and others. NOTE: Zero to Three ... is available for 3-day loan.]

[Request #S8942]

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"Does Amount of Time Spent in Child Care Predict Socioemotional Adjustment During the Transition to Kindergarten?" By the National Institute for Child Health and Human Development, Early Child Care Research Network. And "Morning-to-Afternoon Increases in Cortisol Concentrations for Infants and Toddlers at Child Care: Age Differences and Behavioral Correlates." By Sarah E. Watamura and others, Institute of Child Development, University of Minnesota. IN: Child Development, vol. 74, no. 4 (July/August 2003.) pp. 976-1005; 1006-1020

["One of these studies found that the more time children spent in child care, the more likely they were to be disobedient and have trouble getting along with others, though it suggested that factors like a mother's sensitivity to the child's needs could moderate that outcome. The correlation between quantity of child care and behavior problems remained even when other variables were taken into account, including the quality and type of the child care, the mother's sensitivity to her child's needs and the family's socioeconomic status. The other study found that in children younger than 3, levels of cortisol, a hormone associated with stress, rose in the afternoon during full days they spent in day care, but fell as the hours passed on days they spent at home...while none of the cortisol levels measured were high enough to be considered signs of psychological trauma, they were nonetheless a cause for concern." New York Times (July 16, 2003).]

[Request #S8943]

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Responses to "Time Spent in Child Care ...." IN: Child Development, vol. 74, no. 4 (July/August 2003) pp. 1021-1075.

[Includes: "Child Care Quality Matters: How Conclusions May Vary With Context;" "Children at Play: The Role of Peers in Understanding the Effects of Child Care;" "Shared Care: Establishing a Balance Between Home and Child Care Settings;" "Children, Stress, and Context: Integrating Basic, Clinical, and Experimental Prevention Research;" "Less Day Care or Different Day Care;" and others.]

[Request #S8944]

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CHILDREN

Low-Income Children in the United States. By Hsien-Hen Lu, National Center for Children in Poverty. (The Center, Washington, DC) July 2003. 2 p.

Full Text at: www.ecs.org/html/offsite.asp?document=http://www.nccp.org/pub_cpf03.html

["The United States’ child poverty rate is substantially higher—often two-to-three times higher—than that of most other major Western industrialized nations. While the child poverty rate has been reduced by more than one quarter since it peaked in 1993, the decline stalled in 2001. With the recent economic downturn, there is a risk the United States will abandon the policies that helped families in the 1990s create better lives for themselves."]

[Request #S8945]

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The Well-Being of California's Children. By Frank F. Furstenberg and others. (Public Policy Institute of California, San Francisco, California) 2003. 116 p.

Full Text at: www.ppic.org/content/pubs/R_703FFR.pdf

["This report discusses California children's physical health, emotional adjustment, education attachment, pro-social involvement ... compares California's children to those in the rest of the nation ... finds that the child poverty rate has declined, but still remains high ... and varies across California's counties." StateNet California Journal (July 18, 2003).]

[Request #S8946]

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Child Welfare Summit: Looking to the Future: An Examination of the State of Child Welfare and Recommendations for Action. By Center for the Study of Social Policy. (The Center, Washington, DC) 2003.

["This report includes an overview of the children touched by the child welfare system and the challenges that system faces, along with descriptions of innovative approaches that have shown promise throughout the country. There are a total of 21 recommendations for federal policy and legislative change."]

Executive Summary. 12 p.:
www.cssp.org/center/resources/2497_CSSP_Summary_FINAL.pdf

Full Report. 77 p.:
www.cssp.org/center/resources/CSSP_ChildWelfare_FINAL.pdf

[Request #S8947]

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LOW INCOME

Living at the Edge: America's Low-Income Children and Families: Employment Alone is Not Enough. By Nancy K. Cauthen and Hsien-Hen Lu, National Center for Children in Poverty. (The Center, New York, New York) August 2003. 11 p.

Full Text at: www.nccp.org/media/lat03a-text.pdf

["Forty percent of American children live in low-income families, meaning their parents make double the federal poverty level but cannot provide their children with the basic necessities. This study shows why work alone is not enough to help people move into economic self-sufficiency. As families increase their earnings above the federal poverty level, they rapidly lose eligibility for the kinds of benefits like health care and child care subsidies that help them keep their jobs and work themselves into a better standard of living."]

[Request #S8948]

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RESEARCH

When Housing and Child Care Meet: Lessons Learned from Seven Child Care and Community Development Partnerships. By Diana A. Meyer and others. (The Enterprise Foundation, Columbia, Maryland) 2003. 198 p.

Full Text at: www.enterprisefoundation.org/downloads/WHCCM_full.pdf

["This study found that partnerships between community developers and child care organizations had positive impacts on low-income children, their parents and home-based child care providers. The non-traditional partnering of housing organizations and child care organizations resulted in better care for thousands of low-income children and allowed many parents the opportunity to work."]

[Request #S8949]

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TEMPORARY ASSISTANCE FOR NEEDY FAMILIES

Families on TANF in Illinois: Employment Assets and Liabilities. By Gretchen Kirby and others. Prepared for the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services. (Mathematica Policy Research, Washington, DC) June 10, 2003. 147 p.

Full Text at: www.mathematica-mpr.com/PDFs/tanfillinois.pdf

["Based on survey findings, this report examines the characteristics, circumstances, and job readiness of single-parent TANF cases, noting that most are not long-term welfare recipients, and the majority had some paid employment in the past two years. However, many had weak educational backgrounds and reported problems such as poor physical or mental health, caring for a family member with a health problem or special need, or problems with child care and transportation. Although Illinois has a strong work incentive package, fewer than a third of these household heads are meeting federal work requirements. In response, comprehensive strategies may be needed to address the multiple liabilities prevalent in this population." Mathematica Update (July 10, 2003).]

[Request #S8950]

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WELFARE REFORM

Prisoners of Hope: Welfare to Work in Los Angeles. By Patrick Burns and others, Economic Roundtable. Prepared for the Board of Supervisors of the County of Los Angeles (The Roundtable, Los Angeles, California) July 2003. 272 p.

Full Text at: www.economicrt.org/download/prisoners_of_hope2.html

["Most welfare parents remain in poverty even after many years in the labor force. Most families have not become self-sufficient after participating in the county’s welfare-to-work program. Findings in the report include that parents who are projected to exhaust their lifetime limit of welfare from 2003 through 2005 had average annual earnings in 2001 of $5,391 and the average quarterly employment rate among parents who entered the labor market has declined over the past three years, from 43 percent in 1998 to 34 percent in 2001. This downturn appears to be the result of more prevalent barriers to employment among recent groups of parents entering the labor market."]

[Request #S8951]

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Before and After Welfare Reform: The Work and Well-Being of Low-Income Single Parent Families. By Avis Jones-DeWeever and others. (Institute for Women's Policy Research, Washington, DC) 2003. 62 p.

Full Text at: www.iwpr.org/pdf/D454.pdf

["According to data taken approximately three years after the passage of welfare reform, fewer recipients have access to health insurance, fewer have acquired at least some college education, more are concentrated in urban areas, and improvements to families' economic well-being are nominal despite the increased employment participation of low-income single parents. For those surviving on the edge, balancing the costs of employment against other familial responsibilities makes the economic gains of working vs. receiving welfare nearly indistinguishable." Connect for Kids (July 14, 2003).]

[Request #S8952]

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STUDIES TO COME
[The following studies, reports, and documents have been ordered or requested, but have not yet arrived. Requests may be placed, and copies will be provided when the material arrives.]

HEALTH

ASTHMA

“Association of Consumption of Products Containing Milk Fat with Reduced Asthma Risk in Pre-school Children: The PIAMA Birth Cohort Study.” By A.H. Wijga, National Institute of Public Health and the Environment, Department of Chronic Disease Epidemiology, The Netherlands, and others. IN: Thorax, vol. 58, no. 7 (July 2003) pp. 567-572.

[“Environment and lifestyle contribute to the development of asthma in children. Understanding the relevant factors in this relationship may provide methods of prevention. The role of diet in the development of asthma in pre-school children was investigated. The study found that in pre-school children, frequent consumption of products containing milk fat is associated with a reduced risk of asthma symptoms.”]

[Request #S8953]

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“How Environmental Exposures Influence the Development and Exacerbation of Asthma.” By Ruth A. Etzel, Department of Environmental and Occupational Health, George Washington University. IN: Pediatrics, vol. 112, no. 1 (July 2003) pp. 233-239.

[“Environmental exposures may increase a child’s risk of developing asthma and also may increase the risk of asthma exacerbations. Exposure to outdoor air pollutants primarily leads to increased exacerbations, sometimes manifested as asthma. Exposure to dust mites and tobacco smoke are risk factors for the development of asthma and may also exacerbate existing asthma. Whether decreasing these exposures will result in decreases in asthma prevalence and exacerbations is not yet documented.”]

[Request #S8954]

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