Throughout the life span, infants, children, and adults may be eligible for supports from a variety of social safety net programs. Social safety net programs provide financial and in-kind support, such as food vouchers, housing vouchers, and health insurance, to individuals and families in need. Safety net programs are typically funded at the federal and state levels and administered at the local level. This decentralization of program administration gives states and local governments flexibility in designing programs to meet the needs of their local populations. However, decentralization also results in some variability in eligibility requirements and benefit amounts across states. Benefits are directed to adults, but programs are sensitive to the presence of children in a household, and benefits are designed to meet the ...

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