Is this website another blog that will just whine about why people don’t have enough to eat? No! This blog is going to be about pointing you to the resources available, both public and private sector to help people who are in need of food get the help they need. It may come as a surprise to you but there are about 46 million people in the United States who are receiving food stamps from the government. In some states, the food stamps population is near 20% including states like Tennessee, Oregon, New Mexico, District of Columbia, Mississippi and about half of the 50 states have food stamp population close to 15% of their population, which also happens to be the national average. When you think about it, one in seven people living in this country are on food stamps.
From the image above, you can see that the number of people on public food assistance was rising steadily between 2002 – 2007 but really took off after 2008 due to the great recession. And even though unemployment has fallen to rates that was seen before the recession hit. So, if unemployment is low, then why are so many people still on public assistance? The answer has to do with wage stagnation and the changing economy. First, when you look at wages, they’ve been flat for a very long time. So, even though people are getting jobs, their income is not rising as fast, hence the need for public assistance to supplement their earning. If you watch the video below, you will see that companies like Walmart, who pay their workers very low wages are part of the problem because some of these workers have to apply for public food assistance to make ends meet. Second, the changing nature of the economy is such that after the recession, a large number of people either saw their jobs leave or were never able to find jobs that paid their old salary. They therefore had to settle for less.
You look at a state like Tennessee with a food stamps population of 20.04% (which translates to 1,312,505 people on food stamps from a total population of 6,549352) as of 2015. When you look at the actual numbers, it’s staggering how much help people need in food assistance in one of the richest countries in the world. That’s why we are going to focus this blog on helping people find the resources they need to talk about SNAP Food Stamps, EBT Card, WIC Program from the public sector and Food Banks, Farmers Market and other resources in the private sector.