Tools & Research
Springfield WORKS and the Economic Pathways Coalition have partnered with the Federal Reserve Bank of Atlanta to develop groundbreaking tools (tabs to the right) that help individuals, employers, and policymakers understand which in-demand career pathways will lead to self-sufficiency and mitigate the potential loss of public assistance (sometimes known as a benefits cliff) based on their income, residence, career goals, and family dynamics.
- Help individuals understand how much money they will gain through paid employment and the financial tradeoffs from the loss of public assistance as they progress through their career pathways
- Identify benefits cliffs by analyzing how public benefits interact with career pathways in specific Massachusetts geographic areas
- Assist stakeholders in identifying barriers to career advancement and economic mobility and to support workers and job seekers in their movement toward economic self-sufficiency.
- Simulate policy and programmatic changes to eliminate benefits cliffs and support family financial stability (coming soon)
- Promote broad cross-sector use of the tool to help influence collective action to change systems related to public benefits for working families
- Engage the private sector to examine compensation structures, practices, and policies related to low- to moderate-income upskilling and advancement opportunities
These tools come from a partnership between the Federal Reserve Bank of Atlanta and the Western Massachusetts Economic Development Council and Springfield WORKS, in coordination with The Food Bank of Western Massachusetts, Baystate Health’s Ascend Family Prosperity Initiative MA Department of Transitional Assistance, MassHire Hampden County Workforce Board, and MA Executive Office of Labor and Workforce Development. It is powered by the Atlanta Fed’s Career Ladder Identifier and Financial Forecaster (CLIFF).