From 1960 to 2006, spending on youth by more than 100 major federal programs shifted “from broad-based programs to programs targeting low-income or special needs children,” according to the Urban Institute. Thirteen major programs enacted during that time, including Medicaid and food stamps, account for 65 percent of all federal spending on youth.
Overall, federal spending on youth increased from $53 billion in 1960 to $333 billion in 2006. That represents an increase as a percentage of the gross domestic product (from 1.9 percent to 2.6 percent), but a decline as a share of federal domestic spending (from 20.1 percent to 15.4 percent). Over the same period, spending on non-child portions of Social Security, Medicare and Medicaid rose from 2 percent of GDP to 7.6 percent. Free. 32 pages. (202) 833-7200, http://www.urban.org/UploadedPDF/411432_Kids_Share_2007.pdf.