Most of us will agree that one of the major causes of welfare dependence and homelessness is people having children that they can’t afford. John C. Goodman of Forbes Magazine tackled this subject in an article entitled, “Why Are The Women Who Can Least Afford Them Having Children?” He points to statistics that show that women living below the poverty level are five times more likely to choose to have children than more financially stable women.
The conclusion that the Brookings Institute came to with regard to this trend is that “These women perceive that they have so little chance for success in life not solely because of their own disadvantage, but also because of the environment in which they live. They see no reason to postpone having a child and may even benefit from having one, regardless of marital status.” Perhaps part of the answer is to stop monetarily rewarding this behavior? If we pay poor people to have kids, they’re going to have kids.