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Food Stamps Turn 30, but Thousands of Coloradoans Still Hungry

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Monday, May 21, 2007   


Thousands of working families in Colorado that have trouble making ends meet, could be getting help to put food on the table. The modern Food Stamp Program turns 30 years old this week, but Nicholas Saccaro with the Care and Share Food Bank in Colorado Springs says only half of eligible families sign up.

“The USDA's own data says that it takes eight hours to complete the paperwork and three trips to the food stamp office, and we're talking about a lot of working poor families that quite frankly just don't have the time.”

Saccaro notes that for many seniors, the benefit level isn't worth the time it takes to sign up.

“The average benefit that a senior citizen is going to see is $10 a month, and so I think there's a lot of folks that feel like 'you know for getting my ten bucks a month, do I really wanna deal with three trips to the food stamp office and eight hours of paperwork?'”

The Food Stamp Program is tucked into the federal farm bill, which is up for reauthorization this year. A separate bill before Congress would boost funding for the program by four billion dollars and raise the minimum benefit from $10 to $30.



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