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Northwest Voices

Seattle Times letters to the editor

July 22, 2013 at 7:03 PM

Food-stamp benefits under fire

Allotment is too much

Davida Norrell is a single mom on food stamps. [Ken Lambert, The Seattle Times.]

Davida Norrell is a single mom on food stamps. [Ken Lambert, The Seattle Times.]

Kyung Song’s illuminating story on the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) was the first time I’ve seen a monthly allotment for a participant, and it made me question my support for such low-income food assistance. [“A food-stamp fight over values,” page one, July 18.]

$526 a month is very generous for a three-member family. I checked with Seattle-area friends who have kids, who were flabbergasted by how quickly Davida Norrell ran out of program benefits (two weeks), when they don’t spend that in a full month on larger families.

If she or her daughters cooked, instead of buying microwave meals, and ate reasonable portions, Norrell could stretch her dollar — our tax dollars — much further.

This generous allotment, which encourages overeating and poor nutrition, seems to work at cross-purposes to Michelle Obama’s anti-obesity campaign.

Sadly, I’m not surprised our government is defeating itself.

Greg Piper, Seattle

Comments | More in Politics | Topics: allotment, food assistance, food stamps

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