New Article Explores Impacts of Housing Instability on Children’s Access to Safety Net Programs

A new article in Pediatrics, the official journal of the American Academy of Pediatrics, draws on survey data from Opportunity Starts at Home (OSAH) campaign partner Children’s HealthWatch (CHW) to demonstrate that cost-related disruptions in housing stability have significant impacts on many different safety net programs affecting family well-being. Using cross-sectional survey data on caregivers and children recruited into the study from emergency departments and primary care clinics in Baltimore and Philadelphia between 2011 and 2019, the article explores the reasons for family moves and how those moves relate to participation in the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP), the Special Supplemental Nutrition Program for Women, Infants and Children (WIC), and Medicaid. The authors find that those families experiencing cost-related moves were more likely also to experience disrupted access to social safety net programs, and they emphasize the importance of keeping children connected to housing, food, and healthcare. Like Children’s HealthWatch, the American Academy of Pediatrics is an OSAH campaign partner. Read the article here and additional commentary here.