Women’s Lived Experiences with Temporary Assistance for Families (TANF): How TANF Can Better Support Women’s Wellbeing and Reduce Intimate Partner Violence

Women experiencing poverty are more likely to face intimate partner violence (IPV), poor health, and stigma, and IPV survivors are overrepresented among those participating in TANF. This research article explores the impact of TANF on women’s wellbeing through in-depth, semi-structured interviews during the COVID-19 pandemic with 13 women who had TANF experience in three U.S. states. The article concludes with findings to demonstrate how increasing TANF cash benefits and other cash transfers for those experiencing poverty, adopting solely state funded TANF programs, increasing funding for TANF administration, addressing TANF stigma and racialized narratives, and allowing optional child support participation or a larger “pass-through” of child support are important steps toward making TANF more protective against IPV.

Record Type: 
Journal Article
Publication Date: 
January, 2022
January 2022
Partner Resources
  • Supportive Services
  • Special Populations
    • Domestic Violence Survivors
  • TANF Program Administration