Posted by 04 December 2019
This week, Department of Agriculture officials announced a rule change that will make it more difficult for states to waive work requirements for able-bodied individuals on the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP).
Under current law, food stamp recipients who are between 18 and 49 and who do not have a disability or dependents must work or be in work training programs for 20 hours a week. However, states have broad leeway to waive this requirement. The Trump Administration wants to reduce the criteria states can use to do this.
Officials justify this move as a way to spur food stamp recipients to find jobs if they are able to work. These officials point out that it does not affect people who are caring for children, the elderly, or those who have a disability. They argue that in today’s good economy, there are plenty of jobs for people who want them.
Opponents counter that this regulation will end vital food assistance to needy Americans. They say that it is a way to push people off a program that they need to feed their family. They also argue that it removes the flexibility of states to design a food stamp program that takes into account people who have sporadic work or are underemployed.
A similar measure failed in Congress when SNAP was reauthorized last year.
Do you support cutting off food stamps for able-bodied recipients who are not working?