Tuesday, August 31, 2010

40 Million Americans live on food stamps

Source: Press TV

record number of people are living on government handouts in the US, as one out of six Americans now gets various anti-poverty supports, including food stamps.

A survey of state data by daily USA TODAY released on Monday showed that more than 50 million Americans are on Medicaid -- the federal-state program designed mainly to help the poor. That is an increase of at least 17 percent from December 2007, when the economic recession started.

"Virtually every Medicaid director in the country would say that their current enrollment is the highest on record," said Vernon Smith of Health Management Associates.

Government data for May indicates that the number of the people getting food stamps has surged to 40 million, a rise of almost 50 percent during the economic downturn.

Compared with 2007, nearly 10 million receive unemployment insurance, which shows a 4 percent rise.

Meanwhile the number of the people who are on welfare program has grown to 4.4 million, an 18 percent increase during the recession.

According to the report, the steady growth in safety-net programs is mainly due to the recession that has increased the number of the people who are qualified to get support under existing rules.

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