Criminal Incarceration, Statutory Bans on Food Assistance, and Food Security in Extremely Vulnerable Households: Findings from a Partnership with the North Texas Food Bank
Applied Economic Perspectives and Policy
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Leveraging a unique partnership with the North Texas Food Bank, we are able to collect original survey data from food pantry clients in North Texas to investigate a question that has received little attention due to a lack of data. Specifically, we assess the relationship between criminal incarceration and food security. Our analysis suggests minimal impact of incarceration, broadly defined, on household-level food security. However, differentiating between drug- and non-drug-related incarceration, our analysis suggests a positive causal effect of drug-related incarceration on food security, particularly among U.S. born households. This is consistent with an important role being played by the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) since many states ban participation by former drug offenders. To this end, we document a positive causal effect of incarceration on SNAP participation only among non-drug related offenders. The results call into question the efficacy of statutory bans on program participation for those reintegrating into society.
Food security; Crime; Incarceration; Food stamps; SNAP
Economics | Social and Behavioral Sciences
McDonough, I. K.,
Millimet, D. L.
Criminal Incarceration, Statutory Bans on Food Assistance, and Food Security in Extremely Vulnerable Households: Findings from a Partnership with the North Texas Food Bank.
Applied Economic Perspectives and Policy, 41(3),