Tag: Welfare

Conservative Maine Government Doubles Down On Successful Welfare Reform Policies Despite Leftist Whining

Maine Doubles Down On Welfare Reform Despite Media Backlash – Daily Signal

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Mary Mayhew, commissioner of Maine’s Department of Health and Human Services, knows her politics aren’t always popular.

“I can’t stress enough what an attack campaign it has been from the media for four and a half years,” Mayhew said Thursday at an anti-poverty forum in Washington, D.C., hosted by The Heritage Foundation.

Then there are the more personalized critiques: “There is a poet, or he calls himself a poet, and he sends me poems all the time,” she added. “They are not nice poems.”

Mayhew claims that detractors – who mostly take issue with welfare reforms enacted by Gov. Paul LePage, a Republican, since his election in 2011 – have gone so far as to call her “Commissioner Evil,” and her and LePage’s policies a “War on the Poor.”

The irony, according to Mayhew, lies in the fact that her and LePage’s efforts actually aim to empower Maine’s poorest citizens. She says a third of the state is on welfare.

“The welfare hurricane doesn’t just destroy one family; it destroys generations of them,” Tarren Bragdon, president and CEO of the Foundation for Government Accountability, said at the event Thursday. “This work is about giving children a better chance for a future.”

To illustrate that point, Mayhew told a story of one of her first days on the job as DHHS commissioner, spent touring a substance abuse treatment facility for adolescents:
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I was taken aback by one of the youth who came up to me – it was actually several youth, who were just completely focused on whether I could help them get disability. These were 15-year-old, 16-year-old young men clearly battling addiction, but they had decided that the answer for them was to pursue disability. And, frankly, as we all look at that pathway, that truly is committing individuals to a lifetime of poverty.

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Since LePage assumed the governorship, Maine has reduced enrollment in the state’s food stamp program by over 58,000; currently, according to Mayhew, there are 197,000 people on food stamps, down from a high of 255,663 in February 2012.

Mayhew says the decline is due to eliminating the waiver of the work requirement previously attached to food stamps, as also witnessed in Kansas. Under the new legislation, recipients would need to work 20 hours per week, volunteer for about an hour a day, or attend a class to receive food stamps past three months.

LePage and Mayhew have also rolled back Medicaid eligibility through a series of battles Mayhew called “fierce.”

With a population of roughly 1.3 million, Maine had 357,000 individuals receiving Medicaid benefits when LePage took office. Today, 287,000 people are on Medicaid, according to Mayhew.

“What we have done truly has taken the arguments to the public to underscore what has been lost as that program grew out of control, never mind that the resources that had to be devoted to Medicaid were being taken away from education, infrastructure, and reduced tax burden on the state of Maine,” Mayhew said.

In August, Maine DHHS announced they planned to redirect $3.24 million in welfare savings to fund home care services for elderly citizens as well as the Meals on Wheels program.

Lastly, Mayhew touched upon Maine’s efforts to retool the Temporary Assistance for Needy Families (TANF) and Electronic Benefit Transfer (EBT) card programs, stating that Maine had over 15,000 open TANF cases when LePage took office. That number is down to less than 5,000.

LePage’s and Mayhew’s policies, as Mayhew herself highlighted, have not been without controversy.

Earlier this week, amid an ongoing dispute over EBT cards being used to wire money abroad, critics accused the LePage administration of using last Friday’s terror attacks in Paris to justify reforms.

“This proposal is really an example of fear-mongering at its worst,” Robyn Merrill, executive director of Maine Equal Justice Partners, told MPBN News.

But Mayhew does not plan to back down – especially if it means reducing her own influence long-term, and shifting that responsibility to local non-profits.

“I can’t underscore enough that part of the issue is government is too big, my agency is too large, and people are trying to preserve their jobs,” she said.

“We have got to reduce the size and scope of these agencies if we are going to have communities really take on the responsibility of supporting these families and these individuals on those pathways [to independence].”

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British University ‘Welfare And Diversity Officer’ Charged With Urging People To Kill White Men

Goldsmiths University “Welfare And Diversity Officer” Bahar Mustafa Brought Up On Charges For Urging People To Kill White Men – Moonbattery

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Looks like the laws leftists have imposed in Britain forbidding free speech can cut both ways:
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A student diversity officer who was caught up in a racism row after allegedly posting ‘kill all white men’ on social media has been summonsed to court to face malicious communications charges.

Bahar Mustafa, 28, of Edmonton, North London, a welfare and diversity officer at Goldsmiths University, will appear at Bromley Magistrates’ Court on 5 November, police said.

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In the ultra-left university environment, not many have a problem with Bahar:
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A student petition calling for her to be removed from her position garnered only 165 signatures, and she was allowed by the student union to keep her job, because it failed to meet the 3% threshold to trigger a referendum that could have dislodged her.

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To call her a racist or a sexist because she wants white men to be killed would reveal ignorance of the deranged mishmash of corrosive lies that comprises the liberal ruling class’s official ideology:
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Ms Mustafa explained that she could not be guilty of sexism or racism against white men “because racism and sexism describe structures of privilege based on race and gender and therefore women of colour and minority genders cannot be racist or sexist, since we do not stand to benefit from such a system.”

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However, such a system only exists in the delusions of progressives. After all, no one gets a university position by denouncing women and nonwhites. BTW, men are the minority gender, so when do I get my minority privilege?

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Over Half Of All Immigrant Households In U.S. On Some Form Of Welfare

Report: Immigrant Households Using Welfare At Vastly Higher Rate Than Native-Born Households – Big Government

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Immigrant-headed households in the U.S. use welfare at a much higher rate than their native-born counterparts and that trend holds true for both new and long-time immigrant residents, according to a new study.

According to a report released Wednesday from the Center for Immigration Studies, 51 percent of immigrant-headed households (both legal and illegal) reported using at least one welfare program during the year in 2012. Thirty-percent of native-headed households meanwhile used at least one welfare program.

The CIS report analyzed welfare data from the Census Bureau’s Survey of Income and Program Participation (SIPP). Included in the center’s definition of welfare is Medicaid, cash, food, and housing programs.

“If immigration is supposed to benefit the country, then immigrant welfare use should be much lower than native use,” Steven Camarota the CIS’s Director of Research and the report’s author said. “However two decades after welfare reform tried to curtail immigrant welfare use, immigrant households are using most programs at higher rates than natives.”

Camarota noted that the skill and education level of many current immigrants is contributing to their welfare use.

“The low-skill level of many immigrants means that although most work, many also access welfare programs. If we continue to allow large numbers of less-educated immigrants to settle in the country, then immigrant welfare use will remain high,” he added.

While welfare use among both new and old immigrants is high – with 48 percent of immigrants in the U.S. for more than 20 years reporting welfare use – the rates vary based on region of origin.

In 2012, 73 percent of immigrant-headed households from Central America and Mexico reported using one of more welfare program. Households from the Caribbean used welfare at a rate of 51 percent, African immigrants were at 48 percent, South America at 41 percent, East Asia 32 percent, Europe 26 percent, South Asia 17 percent.

The report further highlights that while immigrant-headed households use welfare at a higher rate than natives they also pay taxes at a lower rate.

“On average, immigrant-headed households had tax liability in income and payroll taxes in 2012 that was about 11 percent less than native households, or about 89 cents for every dollar native households pay, based on Census Bureau data. Immigrant households have lower average incomes (from all sources) than native households and are a good deal larger, giving them more tax deductions. As a result, their average income tax liability is less than native households,” the report reads

Other findings in the CIS report include:

• No single program explains immigrants’ higher overall welfare use. For example, not counting subsidized school lunch, welfare use is still 46 percent for immigrants and 28 percent for natives. Not counting Medicaid, welfare use is 44 percent for immigrants and 26 percent for natives.

• Immigrant households have much higher use of food programs (40 percent vs. 22 percent for natives) and Medicaid (42 percent vs. 23 percent). Immigrant use of cash programs is somewhat higher than natives (12 percent vs. 10 percent) and immigrant use of housing programs is similar to natives.

• Many immigrants struggle to support their children, and a large share of welfare is received on behalf of U.S.-born children. However, even immigrant households without children have significantly higher welfare use than native households without children – 30 percent vs. 20 percent.

• The welfare system is designed to help low-income workers, especially those with children, and this describes many immigrant households. In 2012, 51 percent of immigrant households with one or more workers accessed one or more welfare programs, as did 28 percent of working native households.

• The large share of immigrants with low levels of education and resulting low incomes partly explains their high use rates. In 2012, 76 percent of households headed by an immigrant who had not graduated high school used one or more welfare programs, as did 63 percent of households headed by an immigrant with only a high school education.

• The high rates of immigrant welfare use are not entirely explained by their lower education levels. Households headed by college-educated immigrants have significantly higher welfare use than households headed by college-educated natives – 26 percent vs. 13 percent.

• In the four top immigrant-receiving states, use of welfare by immigrant households is significantly higher than that of native households: California (55 percent vs. 30 percent), New York (59 percent vs. 33 percent), Texas (57 percent vs. 34 percent), and Florida (42 percent vs. 28 percent).

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Mississippi To Begin Drug Testsing Welfare Recipients

Finally: Mississippi To Start Drug Testing Those Receiving Financial Aid Benefits – Townhall

It looks like Mississippi is taking the right steps to reducing fraud when it comes to government assistance. Temporary Assistance for Needy Families (TANF) will now require new applicants to submit a questionnaire that will evaluate the likelihood of substance abuse.

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Residents who apply for this temporary assistance from the state will have to submit to drug testing if the state deems they are likely substance abusers from this questionnaire. Testing positive once would require a TANF recipient to undergo treatment for substance abuse. For testing positive a second time, the recipient would be kicked out of the program for 90 days. A third positive result would remove the recipient for up to a year.

Governor Bryant said, “The TANF program is a safety net for families in need, and adding this screening process will aid adults who are trapped in a dependency lifestyle so they can better provide for their children.” The state will be using federal funds earmarked for TANF to administer the questionnaires and testing. They estimate the cost of testing will be only $36,000 each year.

There are currently only 9 other states that have passed legislation requiring TANF applicants to be screened for drugs. And there are at least 24 more that are looking into this type of legislation too.

This seems like a great way for the state to spend a minimal amount in order to save the system a lot of money. What many people will think here is how Republicans hate poor people and how we don’t want to help them, but in all reality we want to help those who really need it and aren’t abusing the system. The governor of Mississippi and his legislature have figured out a way to do this, and I say “kudos” to them!

Click HERE For Rest Of Story

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Gov. Jindal Moves To Strip Food Stamp Benefits From Welfare Leeches Who Stripped Walmart Shelves Clean

Awesome: GOP Gov. Bobby Jindal Moves To Strip Food Stamp Benefits From Welfare Leeches Who Stripped Walmart Shelves Clean – Weasel Zippers

Feel good story of the day.

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Via Baton Rouge Advocate:

The Jindal administration announced late Wednesday that it is moving to strip food stamps from recipients who took advantage of a technical glitch last month to stock up on free groceries.

The announcement came after U.S. Sen. David Vitter, R-La., pressured state officials to take action by taking away food stamp benefits and forming a task force with local prosecutors to bring criminal charges. Retailers lost money when they allowed food stamp recipients to leave their stores with groceries even though they could not check spending limits. When the transactions were processed later, thousands bounced back because recipients exceeded their food stamp balances.

Smartphone images of empty store shelves and bulging grocery carts at Wal-Marts in Springhill and Mansfield made national news.

The state Department of Children and Family Services said Wednesday that retailers across the state got 12,000 nonsufficient funds messages when the food stamp system came back online. The agency’s spokeswoman, Lindsey deBlieux, said investigations are ongoing to determine how many people took advantage. Retailers could have tried to process transactions multiple times. Recipients also could have made multiple purchases.

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Welfare Parasites Ransack WalMarts After Glitch Affords Them Unlimited EBT Purchasing Power

Walmart Shelves In Springhill, Mansfield, Cleared In EBT glitch – KSLA

Shelves in Walmart stores in Springhill and Mansfield, LA were reportedly cleared Saturday night, when the stores allowed purchases on EBT cards even though they were not showing limits.

The chaos that followed ultimately required intervention from local police, and left behind numerous carts filled to overflowing, apparently abandoned when the glitch-spurred shopping frenzy ended.

Springhill Police Chief Will Lynd confirms they were called in to help the employees at Walmart because there were so many people clearing off the shelves. He says Walmart was so packed, “It was worse than any black Friday” that he’s ever seen.

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Lynd explained the cards weren’t showing limits and they called corporate Walmart, whose spokesman said to let the people use the cards anyway. From 7 to 9 p.m., people were loading up their carts, but when the cards began showing limits again around 9, one woman was detained because she rang up a bill of $700.00 and only had .49 on her card. She was held by police until corporate Walmart said they wouldn’t press charges if she left the food.

Lynd says at 9 p.m., when the cards came back online and it was announced over the loud speaker, people just left their carts full of food in the aisles and left.

“Just about everything is gone, I’ve never seen it in that condition,” said Mansfield Walmart customer Anthony Fuller.

Walmart employees could still be seen putting food from the carts away as late as Sunday afternoon. “I was just thinking, I’m so glad my mom doesn’t work here [Walmart] anymore, that’s the only thing I could think about, those employees working, that would have to restock all that stuff,” said O.J Evans who took cell phone video of the overflowing shopping carts at the Mansfield Walmart.

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Evans believes it was natural human reaction that led people to fill up their carts during the glitch, but Walmart shoppers Stan and Judy Garcia feel very differently. “That’s plain theft, that’s stealing that’s all I got to say about it,” said Garcia.

Lynd says contrary to rumors, nobody was unruly or arrested and they were mainly there to help prevent shoplifting and theft.

A dispatcher for Mansfield police also confirms officers were called in for crowd control at the Mansfield Walmart. She said the shelves were cleared out, forcing Walmart to stop selling food at 9 p.m. There were no arrests.

There was, however, a huge mess left behind. Pictures and videos obtained by KSLA News 12 show aisles packed with shoppers emptying the shelves in Springhill. Another video shows what appear to be at least dozens of overflowing carts left abandoned in the aisles at the Mansfield store, against the backdrop of emptied shelves in the meat department.

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It all happened at the end of a day in which the EBT system went down in several states, including Louisiana. Xerox, a vendor for the EBT system, experienced a power outage while conducting a routine backup test in one of the company’s locations. While the system was back up Saturday night, it appears that it was not functioning entirely properly in some areas.

Kayla Whaling, a spokesperson for Walmart, tells KSLA News 12 that the company was “fully engaged and monitoring the situation and transactions during the outage.”

“We did make the decision to continue to accept EBT cards (and purchases on WIC and SNAP) during the outage so that they could get food for their families.”

Asked whether Walmart would be taking the loss on any food purchased on the cards that did not show limits, or on the perishable food left behind in carts, Whaling would only say that “we monitored transactions during the outage.”

A spokesperson for the Louisiana Department of Children and Family Services says they take all allegations of potential fraud seriously, they are aware of the reports and they will be investigating.

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Click HERE For Rest Of Story

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Democrats plans to make most Americans dependent on government is rolling along I see

The Democrats road map to perpetual majorities, and control includes making as many of us feel we HAVE to vote Democrat. The Wall Street Journal reports that now 15% of Americans are on food stamps

Food-stamp use rose 2.4% in the U.S. in May from a year earlier, with more than 15% of the U.S. population receiving benefits. (See an interactive map with data on use since 1990.)

One of the federal government’s biggest social welfare programs, which expanded when the economy convulsed, isn’t shrinking back alongside the recovery.

Food stamp rolls were up 0.2% from the prior month, the U.S. Department of Agriculture reported in data that aren’t adjusted for seasonal variations. Though annual growth continues, the pace has slowed since the depths of the recession.

The number of recipients in the food stamp program, formally known as the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP), is at 47.6 million, or nearly one in six Americans.

Would I accuse Democrats of willingly doing what they can to lower the standard of living for Americans if it means they will win election after election? YEP!