The Gary Experiment in Welfare Reform

Publisher: Mathematica Policy Research
Nov 30, 1977
Authors
Kenneth Kehrer and Stanley Stephenson, Jr.

Key Findings:

The experiment had a modest disincentive effect on the work effort of household heads by the end of the second year. Families used their additional income to increase expenditures on clothing, medicine, auto repairs, and to reduce their medical debt. Payments did not induce families to move to different housing. Participating families used social service agencies less extensively than did families in the control group. 

The Gary Income Maintenance Experiment, which was conducted between 1971 and 1974, focused on the responses of black families in an urban environment to alternative income supports. This report describes results on participants’ work incentives and family well-being.