April 18, 2012 |
WASHINGTON - Republicans controlling the House are eyeing big cuts to food stamps as they piece together legislation to trim $261 billion from the federal budget over the next decade, hoping to forestall major Pentagon cutbacks. The cuts to food stamps would reduce the monthly benefit for a family of four by almost $60, repealing increases enacted three years ago as part of President Obama's economic stimulus. The changes would also force up to three million people out of the program by tightening eligibility rules, the administration estimates.
April 13, 2012
JOHN MANTON offers me a bowl of potato soup as I take a seat in his tight Roxborough home. He's made a pot that will last for a week. It must. Manton's learned to stretch his food, a frugality demanded by the $37.25 worth of food stamps he receives weekly. He supplements that small amount with $20 from his meager savings. Through no fault of his own, Manton's been unemployed for a year, and Gov. Corbett wants to snoop into his bank account before approving the food stamps that keep Manton from starving.
May 5, 2012 |
It's hard enough to feed a family on food stamps, but this week Pennsylvania made it harder when it imposed an unreasonable asset test. Flunking the asset test means going without food stamps, even if an individual or family meets the threshold of earning no more than 160 percent of the poverty level. Households with people under age 60 are limited to $5,500 in assets. Households with people 60 and above are limited to $9,000. Houses, retirement benefits and one car are not counted, but a second car worth more than $4,650 would be. That means a family struggling to string together part-time jobs is penalized if the parents need separate cars to get to work.
August 29, 2003 |
Is hunger widespread in America? To answer that question, we must distinguish between hunger and malnutrition. Malnutrition is a condition of reduced health due to a chronic shortage of calories and nutriments. Thankfully, poverty-induced malnutrition is virtually non-existent in the United States. In fact, poor American children today are super-nourished, growing up to be one inch taller and 10 pounds heavier than middle-class kids from the 1950s. Hunger is a far less severe condition: a temporary, but real, discomfort caused by an empty stomach.
May 2, 2012 |
I've learned plenty of lessons while taking the weeklong Food Stamp Challenge. Talk about a roller-coaster. A weekly food budget of only $35 had my feelings running the gamut, from hunger to resentment, pressure to determination, and finally just plain ole orneriness. But no matter how hollow and angry I got, the one permanent takeaway I'll have is a profound sense of gratitude. Grateful that I'm able to eat whatever I want. Grateful that I can afford fresh fruits and vegetables.
May 9, 2008 |
Food prices are up, food-bank supplies are down, and more people in the area are receiving food stamps than at any time in years. These are, social-service advocates say, dire days for families already beset by climbing gas prices and declining wages. At the kitchen table, the gas pump and the workplace, people are being squeezed and compelled to live their lives with less and less. But food is the greatest worry. "We have a crisis," said Sydelle Zove, interim food-stamp campaign manager for the Greater Philadelphia Coalition Against Hunger.
January 18, 2012 |
THE Daily News ' Jan. 12 editorial was spot-on in exposing the fact that Gov. Tom Corbett's plan to reinstitute food-stamp asset tests will not only hurt thousands who are struggling to put food on the table, but the rest of the commonwealth as well. According to a recent census report, one out of two Americans is at the near-poverty level. This initiative is not only mean-spirited but also counterproductive in helping those on the lower economic rungs gain eventual long-term financial self-sufficiency.
November 30, 2011 |
FOR YEARS, the woman and her family organized food drives for the food pantry at Lansdale's Manna on Main Street. They were, executive director Tom Allebach said, among the agency's most loyal supporters. Then the husband lost his job and had to take a lower-paying one. Once a stay-at-home mom of four, the woman couldn't find work and decided to go to graduate school. The family became Manna food clients. It's becoming a surprisingly common phenomenon. People who formerly donated food now need food, a phenomenon reflected at food banks throughout the region that report an increasing number of clients, particularly in the suburbs.
November 25, 1986 |
State officials who run welfare programs recommended overhauling federal aid programs yesterday, proposing that food stamps be ended, more recipients be required to work, and cash benefits be increased and be based on the cost of living in each state. The report by state welfare directors from 19 states declared that the current aid programs were ineffective, outlined changes "intended to reduce poverty substantially," and called for unspecified increases in public spending for job training, child care and other services.