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SNAP: The Myths Surrounding Using Food Stamps in the US

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  • The Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP), known by many as food stamps, is not exempt from the myths of those who demand its disappearance

The Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP), better known to many as food stamps, is a federal assistance program to combat hunger and poverty in the United States. Basically, without these resources, many families would not have anything to eat. However, like anything else, it is surrounded by some common myths that it is good to get rid of.

As of 2020, the average US household spent $4,942 on food at home per year, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics. SNAP benefits vary by state and household size, but the US average in fiscal year 2021 was $218 per month per person, according to the Kaiser Family Foundation. However, the average benefit increased by $36.24 as of October 1, 2021.

Despite the fact that SNAP income is essential to bring food to your home, many people think wrong things that have fostered the main myths around this program.

1. SNAP is a burden on taxpayers

There are many people who do not like SNAP, or Social Security, because it is considered a financial burden on taxpayers, However, according to research by Moody’s Analytics, for every $1 spent on SNAP assistance, about $1.73 is generated dollars in economic activity in the US, which in turn translates into a better food supply system, jobs in production and the creation of more food businesses.

2. Only families can access SNAP

The SNAP program is listed as only for families, married couples with or without children, and not for individuals. Completely false. If a person needs food stamps, he can claim the benefit so he can put food in her mouth. About two-thirds of SNAP recipients are children, seniors, and people with disabilities.

Many adults in the age group 18 to 50 are limited to three months of SNAP benefits every three years, unless they are working or in a job training program for 20 hours per week. Of course, some exemptions apply.

3. SNAP is synonymous with social marginalization

Many people in the US with financial and food needs avoid applying for benefits because they fear others will judge them. However, that may change if you take advantage of the online application process or verify eligibility over the phone, and not just through your local office.

Also, SNAP is known as food stamps, due to the many years in which they relied on this system. EBT cards now promote more discretion because anyone can have one and can even be reloaded at an ATM.

4. People abuse SNAP for luxury items and fancy meals

Many of the people who complain about the program and who want it to cease to exist are individuals and families who, fortunately for them, do not suffer from any financial need, however, they do not stop misjudging it, believing that the program allows them to use government resources for unnecessary and luxury products.

Ignorance is the world’s panacea. The SNAP program has tremendous control over the types of eligible items, even if they are not necessarily food. Prepared meals and dinners in restaurants are not allowed.

GLM

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