Is Housing Mobility the Key to Welfare Reform?

James E. Rosenbaum and Stefanie DeLuca


Since 1976, the Gautreaux program in Chicago has helped thousands of inner-city low-income black families move to new neighborhoods within the city itself and in the outlying suburbs. This survey examines the extent to which neighborhood characteristics affect household reliance on welfare (AFDC) receipt. Rosenbaum and De Luca find that families who moved into communities with more-educated neighbors were much more likely to leave public assistance after the move than their counterparts in areas with less-educated residents.