Safety net programs can have impacts in the long-term (on employment, earnings, and mortality) that don't show up in current government practices of limiting time horizons for cost-benefit policy analysis to the short-term.

“Once the positive long-run benefits to children are considered, many safety net programs are cost-effective. However, the current government practice of limiting the time horizon for cost-benefit calculations of policy initiatives often fails to take this into account.”

empirical