Trump Administration Enforces Work Requirements for Food Stamp Program

President Trump’s administration tightens food stamp work requirements

President Trump’s administration tightens food stamp work requirements

Almost 700,000 Americans will lose their access to food stamps under new rules formalized by the Trump administration, the Department of Agriculture announced Wednesday.

Esquire: "New Trump Administration Rules Could Cost 3.7 Million Americans Their Food Stamps" - "A new study of proposed Trump administration changes to the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program, or SNAP, found that they could result in 3.7 million Americans losing their food stamps".

New work requirements for the Supplemental Nutritional Assistance Program by President Donald Trump's administration were blasted on Wednesday by Gov. Andrew Cuomo as "cold" and "heartless".

That change will not affect Iowans, as Iowa is not one of the states that now has that waiver because of the state's low unemployment rate.

Hamler-Fugitt said the Trump administration attempted to include the changed work requirements for able-bodied adults in the farm bill past year, but the move was "rejected outright by a bipartisan majority" of Congress. The USDA initially estimated that up to 750,000 individuals would be dropped from SNAP if the proposal took effect.

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Republicans have been moving to cut these benefits for some time, attempting as recently as previous year to impose stricter work requirements in the House before the Senate ultimately shot them down.

Secretary of Agriculture Sonny Perdue said the new rule will move more and more able-bodied food stamp beneficiaries "toward self-sufficiency and into employment", lessening the burden on taxpayers.

The new rule makes it more hard for states to get those waivers by forbidding them for areas where the unemployment rate has been lower than 6% over a 24-month period.

Under the new rule, effective in April of next year, these waivers won't be granted to areas with unemployment below 6 percent. The new rule, he claimed, rested on the belief that the situation can be changed "so that [the now unemployed] can know the dignity of work".

Congressional Democrats were quick to condemn the administration's actions.

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"We want to encourage people by giving them a helping hand, but not an infinitely giving hand", he said. DHS says this waiver removes the requirement for ABAWD SNAP recipients to work at least 20 hours per week, participate in qualifying education and training activities at least 20 hours per week, or participate in an approved workfare/volunteer program at least 20 hours per week.

Stabenow said the rule will hurt individuals who work in the tourism industry and others who have "unreliable hours like waiters and waitresses" in particular. Had the proposed changes been in effect a year ago, the study found, 3.7 million Americans and over two million households would have lost their food stamps, while millions of others would have seen a reduction in their benefits.

"It is a concerned and we could face issues individuals who are struggling to find a job, who can't get enough will face issues with accessing food", said Signe Anderson, nutrition director with the Tennessee Justice Center.

SNAP isn't the only public benefits program the Trump administration is trying to shrink. Department of Housing and Urban Development Secretary Ben Carson also considered a proposal that would have tripled rents for the poorest Americans and allowed local governments to implement work requirements on those receiving housing assistance, but ultimately backed off the plan.

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