Nearly one-third of US food stamp recipients rely on food pantries
Nearly one-third of US households on the Supplemental Nutrition
Assistance Program (SNAP) rely on food pantries to supplement their food
budget, according to data highlighted this week by the US Department of
Agriculture (USDA), which administers SNAP.
9 March 2016
The USDA reports that in 2014, 23 million American households received SNAP benefits, formerly known as food stamps. Of those households receiving SNAP benefits, 32 percent report they had visited a food pantry in the previous 30 days.
Households receiving other government food assistance also visited food pantries in significant numbers. Twenty-three percent of households using the Women, Infants and Children (WIC) program visited a pantry, as did 23 percent of households where children are receiving free or reduced-price school lunches.
The average SNAP benefit per person is about $125 per person a month, according to the Kaiser Family Foundation. The USDA data shows that these paltry benefits are not enough to sustain many household food budgets, leading families to seek assistance from food pantries.
Despite these statistics, more than one million people across the US could lose their SNAP benefits in 2016 due to the return in many areas of a three-month limit on benefits for unemployed adults ages 18-49 who are not disabled or raising minor children. The cutoffs began March 1 in 21 states, prompting food pantries and soup kitchens to gear up for an influx of people seeking support.
Following the financial crisis in 2008, virtually all US states qualified for a waiver from the three-month limit for those classified as “Able-Bodied Adults Without Dependents” (ABAWDs), imposed in 1996 under the welfare reform bill signed into law by President Clinton. The harsh “work for food” requirements are now being restored in the face of US Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) data that shows that more than a quarter of the 7.9 million US unemployed have been jobless for more than six months.
According to the USDA, about 4.7 million SNAP recipients are deemed ABAWDs, and only one in four of these has any income from a job. USDA data shows these individuals have gross income averages of 17 percent of the official poverty line, or only about $2,000 per year for a household of one in 2015. If these individuals fail to demonstrate that they work, volunteer, or attend job-training courses at least 80 hours a month, they will be cut off SNAP.
The assault on SNAP benefits is a bipartisan attack on the health and wellbeing of workers at a time when the government’s own figures show hunger growing across America. In 2014, President Obama signed a bill that included $8.6 billion in cuts to SNAP. The temporary 14 percent increase in benefits passed by Congress in 2009 ended completely in November 2013.
Under these crisis conditions, Obama’s fiscal year 2016 budget proposal included only $83.692 billion for SNAP, which presently serves an average caseload of 45.7 million Americans, almost 15 percent of the population. This compares to the more than $600 billion a year officially expended on the military. If all military-related expenses are added—including from the CIA, Homeland Security, Energy, State departments, the Veterans Administration and debt payments for previous wars—the real figure is closer to $1.3 trillion a year.
A USDA study showed that 14 percent of households (17.4 million households) were food insecure in 2014, meaning they did not have consistent, dependable access to enough food for an active, healthy life. In 2014, 5.6 percent of US households (6.9 million households) had very low food security, meaning that the food intake of some household members was reduced, and normal eating patterns disrupted, due to limited resources at times during the year.
A 2013 study of 3,300 SNAP households by the USDA’s Food and Nutrition Service found that “SNAP households experience … financial strain that is eased but not alleviated by participation in the SNAP program.” The study found that about 45 percent of SNAP clients limited food consumption, usually by skipping meals, to make it through the month.
NPR reports on other research that shows that hospital admissions for hypoglycemia—low blood sugar, which can be treated with a healthful diet—spike by 27 percent for low-income households during the last week of the month, when many government benefits run out. High-income households showed no similar trend.
A new review of 25 studies published between 2003 and 2014 that looked at the food spending and quality of diets of SNAP recipients showed that they ate on average about the same number of calories as those not receiving benefits, but consumed fewer fruits and vegetables and whole grains and more added sugars.
Tatiana Andreyeva, the study’s lead author and researcher at the Rudd Center for Food Policy and Obesity at the University of Connecticut, said average food stamp recipients scored even worse than the average American on the Healthy Eating Index, a measure of how well diets meet the federal dietary guidelines.
While the average American received a failing grade, scoring just 58 out of 100 on the index, the average SNAP recipient scored just 47 out of 100 in one study, and 51 out of 100 in another. The study also found that both adults and children on SNAP were less likely to eat three meals a day than higher-income people not receiving benefits.
Immigration cuts salaries of Americans $2,470 a year: The nation's unending appetite for new and low-wage immigrant workers, now about about 1 million a year, is slashing the incomes of native-born Americans by $2,470 while boosting corporate profits, according to a new report on the cost of legal and illegal immigration. The U.S. is literally importing poverty, said the new report from the group Negative Population Growth Inc. Critics of immigration and the administration's expansion of the green card worker program have long charged that native American workers have had to accept lower wages just to compete with cheap imported labor and the new report from Ed Rubenstein, president of ESR Research, bolsters those charges.
"There are the billions of taxpayer dollars used to subsidize illegal immigrants' health care and education. There's the revenue we lose out on when illegal immigrants don't pay income taxes. And there's a less recognized pot of billions — the billions of dollars of earnings that illegal immigrants wire out of the United States with no tax or penalty."
BLOG: THE MEX LA RAZA - DEM PARTY AMNESTY: KEEPING WAGES DEPRESSED AND PASSING ALONG THEIR WELFARE AND CRIME TIDAL WAVE COST TO WHAT IS LEFT OF THE AMERICAN MIDDLE CLASS.
BLOG: THERE IS A REASON WHY MOST OF THE FORTUNE 500 ARE GENEROUS DONORS TO THE MEXICAN FASCIST PARTY of LA RAZA. GOOGLE IT!
The nation's unending appetite for new and low-wage immigrant workers, now about about 1 million a year, is slashing the incomes of native-born Americans by $2,470 while boosting corporate profits, according to a new report on the cost of legal and illegal immigration.
"The U.S. is literally importing poverty," said the new report from the group Negative Population Growth Inc.
Critics of immigration and the administration's expansion of the green card worker program have long charged that native American workers have had to accept lower wages just to compete with cheap imported labor and the new report from Ed Rubenstein, president of ESR Research, bolsters those charges.
He found that while in past decades adding immigrant workers helped to increase wages and GDP, the flood that followed the 1986 immigration reform reversed that trend. The reason, he said, is that too much of the workforce is now immigrant labor, rising from 10 percent in 1996 to nearly 17 percent today.
"As alarming as those numbers are, it's gotten a whole lot worse. It's the reason why in both 2013 and 2015 I introduced legislation, the "Remittance Status Verification Act," to fix this. I call this the "Wire Act" for short."
"My bill would require a fee on remittances for customers who wire money to another country but cannot prove that they are in the United States legally. The fee would be used to enhance border security. Basically, we would be able to dramatically improve border security while making illegal immigrants pay for it."
"We also have evidence that many of those illegals who are remitting money are more likely to be illegal immigrant households receiving Social Security, health care benefits, unemployment insurance and/or stimulus money. Is it really fair for those individuals to live off our tax dollars but send untaxed, under-the-table money abroad?"
ON TOP OF THESE FIGURES ADD THE TENS OF BILLIONS HANDED TO INVADING MEXICANS IN THE FORM OF WELFARE.
ON THE STATE LEVEL ALONE, MEXIFORNIA HANDS LA RAZA $30 BILLION IN SOCIAL SERVICES.
THE COUNTY OF LOS ANGELES CHIPS IN ANOTHER BILLION FOR THE LA RAZA ANCHOR BABY BREEDING FOR GRINGO WELFARE PROGRAM.
NOW..... HOW MUCH DOES THE MEX DRUG CARTELS HAUL BACK? SOME ESTIMATES PUT THE NUMBER AT $40 - $60 BILLION!
BLOG: IT IS ESTIMATED THAT THE COUNTY OF LOS
ANGELES HAS A MEXICAN TAX-FREE UNDERGROUND
ECONOMY CALCULATED TO BE IN EXCESS OF $2
BILLION PER YEAR!
There are the billions of taxpayer dollars used to subsidize illegal immigrants' health care and education. There's the revenue we lose out on when illegal immigrants don't pay income taxes. And there's a less recognized pot of billions — the billions of dollars of earnings that illegal immigrants wire out of the United States with no tax or penalty.
We need to crack down on illegal immigrants wiring money out of the U.S.: We need to crack down on illegal immigrants wiring money out of the U.S.