Subsidized jobs programs seek to increase employment and earnings among individuals who have not been able to find jobs on their own. This report presents the perspectives of participants of 11 such programs. Although there were successes, the majority could not translate their experiences into unsubsidized work.
Subsidized Employment Programs Serving American Indians and Alaska Natives
This report describes the ways in which eight TANF programs primarily serving American Indian and Alaska Native (AIAN) families use subsidized employment. It found that their use of subsidized employment has the potential to provide work opportunities for AIAN individuals with limited work experience and barriers to employment.
Benefits and Costs of the RecycleForce Enhanced Transitional Jobs Program
This benefit-cost analysis examines an Indianapolis program that offered subsidized jobs, case management, peer mentorship, and other support to former prisoners. The program reduced incarcerations and increased employment and earnings among participants, and the overall benefits to society from these effects outweighed program costs.
Final Impacts of the Next Generation of Subsidized Employment Programs
“Transitional jobs” are temporary, subsidized jobs meant to teach participants basic work skills or help them get started with an employer. The Enhanced Transitional Jobs Demonstration tested seven such programs for people recently released from prison or low-income parents behind on child support. This report presents the final impact results.
Findings from the Changing Attitudes and Motivation in Parolees Pilot Study
A training program for parole officers in Dallas, Denver, and Des Moines sought to address the persistently high recidivism rates among individuals leaving prison. This study’s results show that officers generally already knew many of the curriculum’s concepts, and changes to their practices were limited.
This report presents findings from an analysis of the effects of subsidized/transitional programs on subjective well-being, or how participants feel about their current life situations. The analysis found that the programs had positive effects on both employment and well-being while the programs operated, but these effects dissipated after the programs ended.
Early Lessons from the New York City Social Impact Bond
A social impact bond (SIB) is an innovative way to fund promising new programs at no cost to taxpayers. This report describes the first operational SIB in the U.S., explaining how an intervention for youth incarcerated at Rikers Island was developed, how the unique financing mechanism was arranged, and how the program was adapted and implemented at full scale.
MDRC is learning what programs work best to prevent at-risk youth from getting in trouble, help juvenile offenders turn their lives around, and give reentering prisoners the chance to get a foothold in the labor market and reduce their chances of rearrest.
This article, first published in Community Development Investment Review, proposes a vision of a social impact bond model that moves beyond just achieving cost-savings to spurring innovation, knowledge-building, rigorous evaluation, and, potentially, outcomes that achieve other socially desirable goals.
The 700,000 incarcerated prisoners released each year face considerable obstacles to successfully reintegrating into their communities, and many return to prison. While state and federal agencies have mounted ambitious prisoner reentry initiatives, this policy memo from our “Looking Forward” series explains that there is still much to learn about what works.