On the PATH to a brighter future

Categories: Blog Features,Initiatives,Reinventing MI

OnThePathIn 2013, House Republicans made some drastic changes to the Family Independence Program (FIP), ensuring that our state’s resources went to families looking for a much-needed — though temporary — helping hand.

One of the major changes implemented was the creation of the Partnership. Accountability. Training. Hope. (PATH) program, which helped clients work one-on-one with their caseworkers to meet work participation requirements while on cash assistance.

It’s been nearly two years since the PATH program started, and the results speak for themselves. According to a recent MLive article, nearly 62 percent of participants have completed the three-week assessment period and are working to become job-ready.

“Self-sufficiency is the ultimate goal but past experience showed us that a one-size-fits-all approach does not work — taking a more customized, client-focused approach that identifies ways to overcome individual barriers has been a key to PATH’s success.”

— Department of Human Services Chief Deputy Duane Berger

Under the previous work-participation program, only 23 percent of clients met federal standards, putting Michigan in jeopardy of losing funding. But now, thanks to the PATH program, success has nearly tripled.

As Michigan’s economy continues to recover and more jobs are created in our state, programs such as PATH and FIP help strengthen our workforce, putting these newly job-ready candidates on the path to a brighter future.