NYC Deputy Mayor on the Controversial Family Rewards Program

December 17, 2012 at 12:25 pm

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Need to Know Anchor Ray Suarez interviews Linda Gibbs, Deputy Mayor for Health and Human Services of New York, where Mayor Michael Bloomberg is one of the most high-profile backers of the “Family Rewards” program, which uses cash incentives to influence behavior connected to reducing poverty. Gibbs talks about how changing behavior may help to lift young people out of poverty.

In March 2007, New York City Mayor Michael R. Bloomberg announced his intention to test a set of antipoverty initiatives, called Opportunity NYC, which until the program ended in 2010, gave temporary cash payments to poor families to boost their income in the short term, while building their capacity to avoid longer-term and second-generation poverty.

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Gibbs answers a question from the Need to Know web community: 65% of the families in this country are liquid asset poor. They don’t have a financial cushion in a crisis. What evidence do you have that this program promotes savings?

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