work·​fare | \ ˈwərk-ˌfer How to pronounce workfare (audio) \

Definition of workfare

: a welfare program in which recipients are required to perform usually public-service work

Examples of workfare in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web Job training and workfare programs have a pretty discouraging history. Jonathan Chait, Daily Intelligencer, "Democrats Are Rushing Into a Job Guarantee. It Could Be a Huge Mistake.," 25 Apr. 2018 Though still high, deprivation has fallen by nearly half — not least in places like Siklosnagyfalu, where villagers benefit from their workfare wages. Patrick Kingsley And Benjamin Novak, New York Times, "An Economic Miracle in Hungary, or Just a Mirage?," 3 Apr. 2018 Among these are workfare schemes, pensions, free school meals and cash handouts, sometimes conditional on recipients sending their children to school, getting them vaccinated and the like. The Economist, "How developing countries weave social safety nets," 12 Apr. 2018 For the last decade, the Indian government has been running a workfare program in villages throughout the country. Seema Jayachandran, New York Times, "Why Public Health Insurance Could Help, Even if You Don’t Want It," 29 Sep. 2017

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'workfare.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

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First Known Use of workfare

1968, in the meaning defined above

History and Etymology for workfare

work + welfare

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Time Traveler for workfare

Time Traveler

The first known use of workfare was in 1968

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Statistics for workfare

Cite this Entry

“Workfare.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 26 Feb. 2021.

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More Definitions for workfare



English Language Learners Definition of workfare

: a program in which people must do work in order to receive money from the government for food, housing, medical costs, etc.

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