Food Stamps

12 05 2008

I’m not in the greatest financial situation right now, but this article on WLNS shows that I’m luckier than I realized.

More Michigan families are relying on food stamps to put dinner on the table. The state says the number of households receiving the benefit has risen more than 50% in the past five years. Authorities say one in eight residents now gets help from the nutrition assistance program. This past March, more than 590,000 Michigan households received food stamps.

Wow.  1 in 8 Michiganders are using food stamps.  Then, I see this story on WLAJ.

It’s a plot to cheat the system, when food stamp users spend their stamps on box upon box of sale soda pop, but then dump out the soda, return the cans, and use the return to buy alcohol or other controlled substances. Grocery managers and security guards in Kalamazoo say they see it all the time.

Are you kidding me?!  I know it’s not technically illegal, but the mom interviewed in the story brings up a good point.

“What do you mean its not illegal?” she said. “It’s still fraud use of food stamps isn’t it? Doesn’t it qualify? Wow.”

There has GOT to be a way to prosecute this!  Having worked in news for five years myself, I have pretty much become immune to the type of stories that are shown.  Most of the time, the reporter rehases a generic story that is done in every market and then they put promos on the air designed to scare the viewer into watching.  I was angry when I saw this story.  I’m not on food stamps, but come on!  I’m tired of my tax money going to alcoholics!  I’m all in favor of helping people who need it, but this is ridiculous.