Universal Work Requirements Are a Universal Win for America
- BY FGA
The Foundation for Government Accountability’s new paper details how efforts to establish universal work requirements across welfare programs would enhance program integrity for the truly needy, encourage a return to work, and boost the economy.
Naples, FL—Today, the Foundation for Government Accountability (FGA) released a new research paper detailing how a growing number of able-bodied adults are draining funds from programs designed for the truly needy, which is busting budgets and harming taxpayers. Congress can address these issues by passing universal work requirements for welfare programs.
“In Washington, D.C., work requirements mean helping both sides of the budget ledger—fewer able-bodied adults draining resources and higher revenues with the influx of new workers,” said Michael Greibrok, senior research fellow at the Foundation for Government Accountability. “But across the rest of the country, work requirements mean even more. They mean more people working in their communities, helping their neighbors, fixing breaks in the supply chain, boosting an ailing economy, and lifting individuals out of government dependence by harnessing the power of work.”
Food stamps have increased from roughly 17 million enrollees in 2000 to nearly 43 million at the beginning of 2023. Before the pandemic, nearly 36 million individuals were enrolled in food stamps, meaning there has been close to a 20 percent increase in enrollment in just three years. More than 18 million of these individuals are able-bodied adults.
Likewise, Medicaid has grown from a program with 35 million enrollees at the turn of the century to more than 100 million today. The program’s growth was especially steep during the COVID-19 pandemic, increasing an astonishing 33 percent. An estimated 40 million able-bodied adults are now enrolled in the program.
“A growing number of able-bodied adults are draining funds from programs designed for the truly needy, which is busting budgets and harming taxpayers. Congress can address these issues by passing universal work requirements for welfare programs,” added Greibrok. “Work requirements are a win for Washington’s budget problems, but more importantly, they’re a win for America’s workforce. It’s the exact policy our country needs right now.”
The Foundation for Government Accountability (FGA) is a non-profit, multi-state think tank that promotes public policy solutions to create opportunities for every American to experience the American Dream. To learn more, visit TheFGA.org.