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Food Stamp Use Skyrockets, 'poverty' Given A New Meaning

January 1, 2010 by  

Food stamp use skyrockets, 'poverty' given a new meaningAs millions of people continue to hit the unemployment lines every month, food stamp use in the United States has reached a record high.

Food stamps, which were renamed "nutritional aid" by the Bush administration to erase the initiative’s stigma, now help feed one in eight Americans and one in four children, The New York Times reports. The program is expanding at a pace of 20,000 people per day.

Even though it has reached record highs, federal officials feel that the program needs to be growing faster still.

Kevin Cocannon, an undersecretary of agriculture, states that food stamps only reach about two-thirds of those who are eligible and that there are another 15 million people who can benefit from the program.

Critics of the welfare policy believe that government assistance can breed apathy and that there are millions who abuse the program. recently reported the story of an Ohio woman with a Mercedes, $80,000 in the bank and a $300,000 home with no mortgage who has legally been receiving $500 per month in food stamps.

Robert Rector, a research fellow at the conservative Heritage Foundation, called the findings of The New York Times report valid, but said the "hyperbole" suggesting that many people are in danger of starving is false, according to the Associated Press (AP).

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