Wilson Calls for Empowering Welfare Recipients

Feb 28, 2002
Press Release
Rep. Joe Wilson, R-SC, today applauded the President for his commitment to welfare reform, and called for continuing the push for more needed reforms. “In 1996, the Republicans in Congress took courageous steps towards reforming the nation’s welfare system, which are now widely praised as the greatest and most effective change made to social policy in decades,” said Rep. Wilson. “I am also very pleased that President Bush has expressed his personal commitment to moving people from a cycle of dependence to the freedom of self-sufficiency.” In 1995, while a state senator, Rep. Wilson chaired the committee that developed welfare reform legislation in South Carolina as well as chairing the conference committee, which resulted in similar reforms that would be adopted nationally a year later. “We now know for sure that the only long-term solution to the problems created by our former welfare system, is to encourage people towards a lifestyle of self-reliance and self-esteem through honest work,” said Rep. Wilson. “Since the reforms the South Carolina GOP championed in 1995, today South Carolina has reduced its welfare caseload by over 60%, and moved over three-quarters of those employable into the workforce. These are not merely statistics, they are proof of lives being changed for the better.” “However, our work is not yet complete. I intend to push for building on past successes to ensure that those leaving welfare find lasting employment and are able to overcome the significant obstacles they face. We must provide proper job training and accessibility to quality child care while encouraging healthy marriages and two-parent families,” said Rep. Wilson. ###