Safety net programs provide billions of dollars for vulnerable populations. But some government human services agencies are doing more – with better outcomes.
Exiting the highway, a driver sees a woman sitting on a crate in the pouring rain, holding a flimsy piece of cardboard over her head. The motorist’s instinct is to help, but they aren’t sure how. Maybe they pause to provide quick relief with an umbrella, money, or a ride to someplace dry.
Even with billions of US dollars1 allocated to safety net programs in the United States, many government agencies find themselves in the same position as the driver. They want to do more than solve individual, short-term problems. But they aren’t sure how.