It was recently reported in The Atlanta Journal-Constitution that over 8,000 people were removed from receiving food stamps each month between April and October because they failed to meet the work requirement.
The report continued to share that 71% of those receiving food stamps are families with dependent children while one-third are families with elderly or disabled individuals. The shocker for most is that these cuts aren’t necessarily the doing of President Trump.
Although the Trump administration wants to push plans to overhaul the country’s food stamp program, the U.S. Department of Agriculture decided to jump a lot sooner.
What does this mean?
According to U.S. Secretary of Agriculture Sonny Perdue, it is imperative for the decrease in the number of people on food stamps. “We are proposing a rule intended to move more able-bodied recipients of Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) benefits to self-sufficiency through the dignity of work,” Perdue was quoted as saying in a press release. “Like other federal welfare programs, food stamps were never intended to be a way of life,” Perdue continued.
This is a monumental move because it forces individuals who relied on government assistance to feed their families to find alternative ways to do so. The program does not simply cut individuals without first checking to see the amount of time they received the benefits and if they had done anything to become self-sufficient while receiving the benefits.
According to The Washington Post, former Office of Management and Budget director Mick Mulvaney suggested a plan to switch food stamps for a “Blue Apron-type program where you actually receive the food instead of receiving the cash for food. It is very clear that there is a major overhaul in a process that will change how the government is being used in regard to social programs.
Who will feel the changes?
It goes without saying that the people most affected by this decline in governmental assistance will be those who struggle economically…basically, the poor. However, those who fall below the poverty line are not the only people who are feeling the heat on these changes. There are those who are disabled, or who are taking care of disabled family members.
There are also disabled veterans who rely on this assistance. Unfortunately, there are many people who would work if they could to obtain additional funding to take care of their immediate needs. For this, the program will have to be more scrutinized to accommodate those who simply can’t work. But what about those who can work but simply refuse? These are the people that the government are attempting to kick in the butt so that they can go out and earn the money that they need to take care of both themselves and their families.
Right now this overhaul in food stamp adjustments is being pushed in Georgia. However, these type of programs are slowly being implemented in other states. Most will argue that this is unfair to those who cannot afford to leave their small children while they go to work jobs that might barely pay enough to support them, let alone pay for childcare.
Others may say that this is exactly what is needed to ensure that people are responsible for their own families without relying on the money from taxpaying citizens to take care of them. Regardless as to which side of this argument one might stand, one thing is for certain…the change is not only coming, but it is actually here. It’s just a matter of who feels the punch and how it will improve any tax adjustments as a result.