Social Determinants of Work Initiative

View the United Way webpage.

The Social Determinants of Work (SDoW) Initiative will bring the Greater Cleveland community together to strategically advance access to work through deepened understanding of the barriers workers face, including benefit cliffs.

What are the Social Determinants of Work?

United Way of Greater Cleveland and Towards Employment have identified the following 8 Social Determinants of Work, which will be explored throughout our SDoW initiative:

Job Flexibility




Sustained Education

Home and Community Health

Broadband Access

Access to Justice

What are Cliff Effects?

Cliff effects occur when individuals receiving public benefits earn new or increased income that disqualifies them from the public benefit, resulting in a net loss of income.

Initiative Objectives



Educate community on nature of the problem and possible solutions pulling from state/federal efforts.


Identify Work

Identify work already being done in the Greater Cleveland area to mitigate benefit cliffs, including direct services and employer practices.


Identify Gaps

Identify gaps in the Greater Cleveland area’s response to benefit cliffs at the mitigation and employer practice level.


Complete a Plan

Complete a Community Action Plan through a strategic community engagement process.