Should Food Stamp Recipients Have to Work?

Mar 23, 2017

A Pop Up Farmer's Market in West Virginia
Credit Clark Davis / WV Public Broadcasting

Should able-bodied West Virginia adults receive food stamps? And if so, should they be required to work or volunteer to get them?

Front Porch host Rick Wilson says no. More than 14,000 food stamp recipients participated in a 9-county pilot program, but only 259 gained employment. On the other hand, 5,417 people were cut off.

But many state lawmakers say yes. A bill in the state Senate would require any able-bodied adult to complete 20 hours of work or volunteer service to receive food stamps.

"Plenty of families are doing everything they can to make ends meet, so we all need to do our part," says state Senator Ed Gaunch in a Daily Mail op-ed, "whether that is through part-time work, work training or volunteerism in all our counties."

We go in-depth on hunger, poverty and the food stamp program, on this week's Front Porch podcast.

Also, we discuss Gov. Justice's decision to light to lantern in the Capitol dome. He says it is to signify the potential health crisis a GOP proposed state budget would create. Wilson likes it, and Front Porch host Laurie Lin says it is a distraction and a stunt.

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