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University at Buffalo Libraries

Social Assistance & Entitlements: Government Documents Information

General Sources

Catalog of Federal Domestic Assistance (U.S. General Services Administration) (current edition)
Lockwood Documents US PrEx2.20: (current edition)
A directory of federal programs, projects, services, and activities which provide assistance or benefits to the American public. The Catalog contains financial and non-financial assistance programs administered by the federal government.

Legal Information on Public Benefits (Cornel University Law School. Legal Information Institute (LII))
Provides an overview of the welfare system and links to related resources,

GAO Reports and Testimony (U.S. General Accountability Office (GAO))
GAO a Congressional agency that audits and investigates federal programs.

Local Departments of Social Services (New York State. Department of Health)

Stateline: Your Source for State News (PEW Center on the States)
Gives news and statistics on social policy programs administered by states.


Search the Libraries Catalog to locate a wide range of books and government publications about Medicare and Medicaid. The Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services administer both programs. (

  • Medicaid
    The Medicaid law is within Title XIX of the Social Security Act. It provides medical assistance for low income individuals and families through a joint Federal state program.
  • Medicare
    Medicare is our country's health insurance program for people age 65 or older, certain people with disabilities who are under 65, and people of any age who have permanent kidney failure. It provides basic protection against the cost of health care, but does not cover all medical expenses nor the cost of most long-term care.

Social Security

Search the Libraries Catalog for books and government documents about the Social Security Administration and its predecessor agencies.

The Social Security Administration (SSA) home page ( highlights the most frequently asked questions. Important SSA sources include:

  • Research, Statistics, & Policy Analysis
    Links to statistics and research organized by subjects and titles.
  • Social Security Benefits Planner
    Starting point to learn about a variety of benefits.
  • Social Security Bulletin (1999-current edition)
    Lockwood Documents US SSA 1.22 (1996-current)
    Libraries Annex US HE 3.3 (1970-1995)
    Libraries Annex US FS 3.3 (1938-1969)
    Contains articles, statistical tables, and program summaries relating to Social Security. See also the Annual Statistical Supplement to the Social Security Bulletin. (1955-1982 with selected gaps--Libraries Annex US FS 3.3/3:; 1983-1995--Lockwood Documents US HE 3.3/3:; and 1996-current--Lockwood Documents SSA1/22/2:.
  • Social Security Handbook (current edition)
    Lockwood Documents US SSA 1.8/ 3: (1995-2001 with gaps)
    Lockwood Documents US HE 3.6/ 8: (1986-1993 with gaps)
    Summarizes information about the Federal Retirement, Survivors, Disability, Supplemental Security Income, Health Insurance, and Black Lung Programs.


Administration for Children and Families (ACF) Policy Planning (U.S. Department of Health and Human Services. Administration for Children and Families)
Review guidance documents, legislation, planning issues, policies, publications, research, and statistics issued by the Department of Health and Human Services' Administration on Children and Families.

New York State Assembly. Committee on Social Services
Includes press releases, notices, and publications issued by the Committee.

Welfare Issues (U.S. Department of Health & Human Services. Assistant Secretary for Planning and Evaluation (ASPE))
Related topics cover Medicare; Medicaid; poverty, income, and assets; and welfare, work, and self-sufficiency.