The 130th Annual Meeting of APHA

4314.0: Tuesday, November 12, 2002 - 8:48 PM

Abstract #35026

Characteristics and needs of substance abusing women on Welfare: Findings from evaluation of the CASAWORKS for families program

A.T. McLellan, PhD1, Marjorie A. Gutman, PhD1, Robert D. Ketterlinus, PhD1, James McKay, PhD2, and Mary Randall, PhD1. (1) Treatment Research Institute, Public Ledger Building, Suite 600, 150 South Independence Mall West, Philadelphia, PA 19106, (215) 399-0980,, (2) Treatment Research Center, University of Pennsylvania, 234 38th Street, Philadelphia, PA 19108

States face a special challenge moving women with substance abuse problems from welfare to work under the requirements of the 1996 federal Temporary Assistance to Needy Families Program (TANF). Yet, little is known even about the characteristics and needs of this potentially important population. We examined the charactersitics and needs of a large diverse sample of substance abusing women on TANF who entered the CASAWORKS for Families (CWF N=673) intervention from 11 sites in 9 states. Substance abusing women on TANF were recruited from welfare offices, welfare employment programs, and other local agencies. This CWF group was compared with: 1) a general TANF sample (GTS N=157) recruited at local welfare offices in 8 of the 11 sites without regard to clients' use of addictive substances; and 2) a sample of substance abusing women on TANF entering 81 standard outpatient substance abuse treatment programs in seven metropolitan areas through the Drug Evaluation Network System (DENS N=520). Findings indicated that substance abusing women on TANF in all samples had multiple, serious and generally chronic health and social problems that can be barriers to employment. In general, the CWF women showed the most severe domestic violence, legal, employment and psychiatric problems. DENS clients showed the most serious addiction problems. Although none of the samples utilized can be considered truly representative, they do provide for the first time a mulit-locale, diverse picture of substance abusing women on TANF as compared with other pertinent groups.

Learning Objectives:

Keywords: Substance Abuse Treatment, Welfare

Presenting author's disclosure statement:
I do not have any significant financial interest/arrangement or affiliation with any organization/institution whose products or services are being discussed in this session.

Substance Abusing Welfare Recipients

The 130th Annual Meeting of APHA