There is only one criminal charge that will disqualify you from getting SNAP, a felony drug conviction after August 1, 1996. I have had murderers, rapists, child molesters and people that have previously been convicted of defrauding the government that can qualify for SNAP. I have learned that many people have been “born” onto the government handout system with food stamps and Medicaid and they expect to be on it till they die. They do not want to get a job and don’t intend on working a day in their life. (They will tell me that.) There are only a few exemptions that keep people from having to register with the workforce commission if they are unemployed and are between the ages of 18 and 50. The first exemption is having to care for a child under the age of 6 and the other is if their doctor signs a statement saying the client is permanently disabled and unable to work. Do you know how many people keep producing children just so they don’t have to work? They can also get more food benefits the bigger the family. Normally, the parents (single or both) do not work. How do they manage? These families are also on every public assistance program available including housing, childcare, utility assistance and also get a free cell phone from the government. (They call their cellphone the “Obama-phone”).
According to Blake (2012), poverty has a huge impact on food insecurities and for single woman households, households with children, households of minorities and inner city households (p. 521). I have literally had single mothers of 7-8 children, state they do not receive any child support from any of their “baby daddy’s”, they are on housing and don’t pay any rent and the utility assistance pays their gas and electricity bills monthly. They don’t have any expenses. It’s hard to believe that people manage that way. (We know that there is a man helping them financially one way or another even though it’s not reported, but we cannot prove it unless someone calls the client in on fraud).
On the other hand, it is frustrating for me when I have an elderly or disabled client or a disabled veteran that receives a little bit of income from SSI/RSDI/VA and I am only able to certify their case for $10 or $15 a month. Are you kidding me? No I am not. I am embarrassed to have to tell an elderly lady that I can only get her $15 a month because her income is too high (and her expenses are just as high). I have also had families that have applied for SNAP due to the loss of their jobs and can only certify the family of five a total of $54 a month. That is not enough to even supplement the family if they have lost their jobs and have a mortgage, utilities and car payments to make monthly.
We do have numerous food banks in our city. If a client is already receiving SNAP they cannot get food from a food bank. They are only able to go the food bank once in a 2 month period and they only receive about $30/food per person in the family. They have to wait at least 7 days before they can go to another food bank. If it was a desperate situation, it could be very helpful however there are those people that take advantage of both SNAP and the food banks. Too many people in our society have an “entitlement disorder”. They think everyone owes the something for nothing. It is ridiculous to me.
Many of my clients come into the office driving a Hummer, Mercedes or Jaguar. They are wearing brand new name brand clothes and sneakers (some still have the tags on them), have Coach or Michael Kors purses, nice hairstyles and fresh acrylic fake nails. How do they get away with that? Well,