The Food Stamp Program Essay

1243 Words Nov 17th, 2016 5 Pages
The United States Government has put a food stamp program in place as part of its anti-poverty effort. Some people argue that programs like the food stamp program create an “entitlement” type of society. Others believe the food stamp program helps millions of people below the poverty threshold and boosts the economy. I believe that the food stamp program is instrumental in helping millions of people climb out of poverty and lead effective lives as contributing members of society.
President Johnson initiated a Food Stamp Program in 1964 as a permanent program and an important, vital weapon against the battle against poverty. In its beginning, the program served about 2.9 million and provided $228 million in benefits. As of 2012, it had over 47 million recipients and provided over 74.6 billion in benefits. Back in the 60’s and 70’s when the program was new, its effects on poverty were not tracked. Over the years, the program has been reformed in an effort to make it a more effective anti-poverty weapon. Households must follow federal eligibility rules which stipulate that they must meet a minimum of three financial criteria in order to qualify for the program. These criteria involve gross income, net income, and assets tests. The asset test criteria changes for households with a person over 60 years old. These criteria vary from state to state. The program serves children, disabled, elderly, and the working poor too. When monitoring the program’s effectiveness against poverty,…

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