Does the U.S. Welfare System Need to Be Reformed?

There are many aspects of American society that need reforming today but one aspect that desperately needs reforming is our welfare system. According to, it says, “The US government responded to the overwhelming number of families and individuals in need of aid by creating a welfare program that would give assistance to those who had little or no income… Many Americans were unhappy with the welfare system, claiming that individuals were abusing the welfare program by not applying for jobs… to qualify for greater benefits. Welfare system reform became a hot topic in the 1990’s. Bill Clinton was elected as President with the intention of reforming the federally run US Welfare program.” The US’s welfare system gives support, such as food or shelter, to poor and needy people and families. The government created the welfare system to help the people. However, the people became more dependent on the system and continued to stay jobless, unmarried, etc.

Because of this, the problems gained federal attention and a bill was passed by President Clinton to limit the amount of welfare a person could receive and give the power of the system back to the states. Today people must meet certain requirements to be eligible for the welfare system. It truly depends on each case per person whether they are homeless, jobless, or in a different condition which leads to how the welfare system can possibly benefit them. But what happens to the people that don’t meet the requirements for eligibility but still desperately need the help of the welfare system? Those people simply don’t receive the benefits of the welfare system and are left to starve and be unsupported by the welfare system. From, one of the users, commented, “Without a doubt, generations abuse the system. There should be no free welfare. Can’t find a job? How about picking up trash on our roads and streets to earn that welfare?”  The person that made this comment was debating whether or not the welfare system in the US needed to be reformed. The person agreed that the system did need to be reformed and they believed people should find a way to work for the welfare. Currently in the United States, people have to meet certain requirements to be eligible for the welfare system. People then begin to depend on the welfare system for everything even after they have been helped and no longer need it. For the people that really need the welfare but are not eligible, there is no way for them to gain the eligibility unless they hit the requirements. There should be a much easier way for the ineligible people to get welfare and one of the ways to do this is by having the ineligible people work for the welfare. This is one of the major weaknesses of the welfare system currently because some people just can’t get the welfare if they don’t meet requirements but if they could work for it, the people could possibly.

From an article on, it says, “It gives uneven levels of Federal support to children in rich and poor states… It may not often much help in serious recessions.” Children in richer states such as Maryland, Connecticut, Hawaii, or Colorado, would receive higher benefits of the welfare system compared to children living in Mississippi, Arkansas, or West Virginia. The states have less money to supply the food and things that the welfare system provides to the needy. Because the states have less money, they have fewer supplies to support the children living in the poorer states.

Our welfare system was created during and close to the end of the Great Depression to help the people during that time. The Great Depression was a time in American history where the stock market crashed, millions of people were hungry and jobless, and the American economy was terrible. That was one of the very few severe recessions our country has had. The welfare system didn’t do much towards the end of the Great Depression so how would we know if it will benefit us if a serious recession were to occur in America today? One of the many aspects of American society that needs reforming is our welfare system. It has many things that could be fixed or changed to make it better to benefit our country.

Does the U.S. Welfare System Need to be Reformed?


Melgar, Liliana Melgar. The Welfare Reform System. City University of New York, 1997. Web. 9 Mar. 2014. <>.

US Welfare System-Help for US Citizens. N.p., 2014. Web. 9 Mar. 2014. <>.

“without a doubt.” Does the U.S. welfare system need to be reformed?., 2013. Web. 9 Mar. 2014. <>.

Sauter, Michael B., Alexander E. Hess, and Thomas C. Frohlich. America’s Richest (and Poorest) States. 24/7 Wall St., 19 Sept. 2013. Web. 9 Mar. 2014. <>.

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