One In Nine Americans Receiving Food Stamps.

As of this past June, over 35 million Americans are receiving food stamp assistance from the Federal Government. That amounts to 1 in 9 Americans who need help in putting food on the table for their family, which is a pretty scary statistic. And while I realize that there are some who abuse the system (as with anything else, there are always people who take advantage), it really bothers me to know that there are that many people who just cannot make ends meet. Friends I know in major cities talk about the increase in the amount of homeless families they are seeing by the side of the road begging, and the fact that there just aren’t any jobs available, or that they themselves have been unemployed for quite some time. News pundits like to say that things are starting to show signs of recovery (and they might for some), but we obviously have a long way to go when 1 in 9 people are in need of food assistance. What are you seeing in your town? What are you hearing? Are jobs becoming more available or more scarce? Has there been an influx of the homeless on street corners near you? What’s the scoop in your city?

photo from shutterstock

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Comments (3)

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  1. Annie Jones says:

    Just curious if you know what the statistics were for food stamp recipients BEFORE the current economic crisis? It seems to me that there have always been far too many people not able to make ends meet.

    I haven’t observed much, although I’m not out and about much either. I haven’t noticed an increase in homeless people on the streets when I go into the city, and I’ve only heard about two people that I actually know who’ve lost their jobs due to the economy (and another who lost hers due for other more specific reasons). One of those is employed again now. I’m sure there must be more, per the talk I hear on TV and radio, but I haven’t seen it myself.

  2. Yeah, I haven’t seen much change either. We’ve had a factory move, but there seems to be new jobs on Craigslist all the time. We have our town homeless person. No one new has come, but you never know what situations peope are in. They may be living out of their car and still have an average wardrobe.

  3. AmandaLP says:

    An increase in street homeless only shows a very small percentage of the homeless population. I live in New York City, and while our street homeless population *may* have gone down (possibly true or possibly due to an incorrect census), the shelter system has seen a large increase in families seeking assistance.

    In addition, jobs becoming available may not be available to homeless families, typically due to education and lack of funding for educational programs. A single mother who cannot afford child care, and cannot qualify for free child care, often cannot keep their educational appointments. For someone who has children and Zero outside resources, it can seem overwhelming.