Who can get welfare? During our lifetime, as Americans, at one point or another, we will ALL be welfare recipients. Social Security, student loans, unemployment insurance, medicare, SSD, medicaid, etc., are all benefits. Although people may not consider some of these welfare it is what it is— government aid. Even if we've contributed towards them. But when we hear the word "welfare" we automatically distance ourselves from it. The types of welfare people see as a bad thing are called TANF (Temporary Assistance for Needy Families). And SNAP (Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program) formerly known as the Food Stamp program.
TANF was enacted in 1997 under the Clinton administration. Its goal is to provide temporary cash assistance to parents with dependent children as they go from welfare to entering the workforce. It also helps reduce dependency and out-of-wedlock pregnancies. A person can be on TANF for up to 5 years during a lifetime (some states allow it for only a few months). When discussing government programs we tend to think about poor Blacks and Hispanics as those who are living off the system because of the overrepresentation of these groups in the media linking them to welfare. But in reality it is White people who receive most of these benefits. The troubling thing about this is that when welfare funding gets slashed it will hurt poor whites more than minorities (undocumented workers are NOT ALLOWED to get benefits).