chapter  3
Profiles of Young Mothers
WithEli Ginzberg, Terry Williams, Anna Dutka, David Lacey
Pages 20

This chapter presents interviews with poor mothers on welfare ranging in age from nineteen to twenty-eight; one, Kim, is white and the others are black. The thrust of the interview was to elicit responses to a limited number of questions: How did the interviewees assess the balance between being on welfare or working for a living? What kind of pressures from their family or from the social workers in the Philadelphia County Assistance Office (PCAO) were exerted on them to explore training and employment? In particular, we wanted to elicit their experiences, and those of their friends, with the availability and cost of child care and the extent to which the presence or absence of such facilities influenced their decisions with respect to a job search. We also asked the interviewees to tell us about their views concerning people on welfare and the extent to which the government should be encouraged to provide jobs and support services for those who want and need to work.