Skip to comments.Working at Kroger: The Need for EBT Reform
Posted on 07/26/2012 4:42:06 AM PDT by RealTeen
Working at a large chain grocery store, you get used to dealing with EBT, WIC and other forms of welfare. Sometimes it is painfully obvious the person does need some sort of help. Other times, too often I believe, someone abusing their government benefits just makes you cringe and doubt the entire system. I find myself echoing an article from a former Wal-Mart employee at College Conservative, who says its time for serious welfare reform. Here are some of my ideas for reform and why I believe it:
Make EBT Recipients Ineligible for Large Lottery Payouts
There were several customers at Kroger who loved to play the lottery, to the tune of $10-$20 every single day, minimum. Im not talking instant scratch-off tickets where they might recoup $10 of their invested cash, Im talking the big games. Pick 3, Pick 4, MegaMillions and Powerball were their games of choice. Meanwhile, as they were dumping upwards of $300 into a losers game a month, they were buying their food with EBT. It would be too much of a problem to force retailers to look up EBT status (if even possible) for small wins, but the large lottery payouts that require winners to go to the state offices should be off limits for EBT recipients. Maybe that would disincentivize their gambling on welfare.
(Excerpt) Read more at jhpolitics.com ...
These are great suggestions. Are there cameras taking film of folks that buy lottery tickets? Can they trace the film to the winning ticket? Otherwise they’d still do it and use someone else as the winner, if they won.
I don't want them to be anonymous. If we are paying for it, they should be grateful and quite the whining.
Rather than people go hungry, I would abolish the entire "SNAP" system we currently have and institute two new mechanisms:
1. Take the savings from the SNAP program and put that money towards kitchens where individuals and families could find meals
2. Set up warehouse distribution of food that would be limited to the basics (pasta, rice, vegetables, dairy, etc). NO alcohol, tobacco, fast food, lottery tickets, candy, lobster, steak, etc.
NO MONEY FOR LOTTERY.....BOOZE.......CIGS.......STEAKS....GAMBLING!!!
>I don’t want them to be anonymous. If we are paying for it, they should be grateful and quite the whining.
Actually I would go even further myself. Screw this anonymity. They should be forced to dress like mimes if they are on public assistance. They have no inclination to get off the dole now, perhaps public shame will do it. They have no shame otherwise.
I do mean the whole white face, clown makeup and goofy french shirt. I cannot imagine someone they would abhor more. Make sure grocery stores and whatnot that accept the food stamps only redeem those used by appropriately dressed people.
I think food stamps should be limited to certain foods, labelled specifically for SNAP. Off brand, low dollar foods like mac and cheese, soup etc. No soda, no prepared foods. Just absolute necessities. Why make it so easy and fun? I mean other than to get votes.
One of guys I work with who comes from what he terms the ghetto, explains to me how the system can be gamed if I ever got assistance. The odd thing is that it is the “ghetto” if you are a minority but it’s just a crappy neighborhood with a bunch of losers if you are not. I find it interesting that things like selling your food stamp credit card to others in exchange for cash to buy unauthorized items is not even thought of as wrong.
If you are using your EBT card to gamble you have no shame. I’ve said it before; have a warehouse to purchase food basics & NOTHING ELSE. I bet the motivation to get a job would increase dramatically once all the goodies were locked up.
EBT should not be easy & fun, it should be sustenance level & that’s it.
Where I live, I was told the you can qualify for WIC with a $40,000 annual income.
I don’t make that much in my wildest fantasies!
I think the only exception that should be made on the lottery tickets is if someone gives that person one as a gift, which does happen on occasions.
Easy to obtain EBT, continual unemployment - creating a dependent society. The EBT thing is way out of hand.
The lottery system is abhorrent already. People would (and have) be literally thrown in jail for doing what the government does with our lottery system. That being said, everyone needs to have the same rules.
We don't live in, nor should we encourage, a civil society with a caste system. There are plenty of people out there that are hurting in this economy and just because someone gets government assistance does not make them bad people. If government assistance bothers you as much as it bothers me, work to get rid of it, don't blame the people who depend upon it.
I once read a column by the great William F. Buckley Jr. that advocated each grocer having a space rented by the tax payers that stocks rice,lard, dried beans, corn meal, flour , powdered milk,hominy and dehydrated potatoes. These products would be free to every American citizen with a valid ID and the food stamp program eleminated. we can all thank ADM and ther K street cronies for adding all the frills to the program.
How about this.
Stop giving out money. Mail a box of rice, canned vegetables, instant potatoes, dry beans, and canned meat to the recipients. Maybe some of that UN people chow. If they don’t like the options, they can go work for something more pleasing to their pallet.
Even simpler, give them coupons that can only be applied to rice, potatoes, milk, etc. for 100% of cost with a “not to exceed” amount.
bump for later
Nope. No such exceptions. If you’re on EBT, zero lottery winnings. If you allowed such an exception, of course EVERY winning ticket “was a gift”, donchaknow.
That would be my choice as well. People need food, then that is what they should get, not a blank check and a system that is ripe for abuse. There is a food bank in my town (run by a liberal Dem, but no matter) that does an outstanding job of food distribution. They make their financial records available and have their operation audited by legitimate overseers (independent CPAs). They spend 95 cents of every dollar donated on food. They don't get involved in politics at the organizational level. I have no problem voluntarily donating to an operation like that.
The lottery machines aren’t near the registers at our Krogers so a cashier wouldn’t know who was playing.
Anyone receiving govt. assistance should not be allowed to vote.
...and spike those foodstuffs with strong doses of Norplant.
Food stamps prop up grocery prices, subsidize Big Ag, and disguise the outrageous inflation rate.
If food stamps were cut off, people who couldn’t afford to feed their families at these current prices would be rioting in the streets. Later, when the free market had once again set the price, Big Ag lobbyists would be rioting in Washington, demanding a replacement for this lost subsidy. And as the citizenry became aware of how rapidly inflation was stealing their wages, there would be riots outside the Fed.
In other words, there’ll be no food stamp reform.
So, why are you prohibiting lobster in your scenario?
Public roads included or not?
Your thread morphed from “no lottery” to “no good food”. I agree people on assistance should not be able to gamble with the assistance, but I don’t agree with the “you can’t get decent food because ‘how dare you lose your job’”.
Meat is a staple, people need red meat as well as fish for a good balanced diet. Fruits, fresh...not packed in syrup...is important to the growth of healthy children. Milk loses some of it’s nutritious value when dehydrated.
There use to be a government food distribution once a month that helped with cheese, peanut butter, milk, vegies, canned meat etc...most of those are now gone. I know in SW colorado, they were only benefitting the Native Americans (read: indians). Specifically those on the reservation.
Like a ten items or fewer lane, there could be a designated check out lane: foodstamps accepted only in this lane.
Where, exactly and specifically, TODAY, can you purchase lobsters for less than US$1.25/lb?
And when that person stops receiving welfare, WIC, food stamps, EBT whatever, then thier voting privilege will be restored.
I was comparing it to whole beef hotdogs of course, but have you looked at THIS WEEK’S price on chicken dogs? Due to the drought processed meat prices have been skyrocketing.
I work part time in the wine and spirits department of a large grocery store. The department is openly connected with the main store so I also see a considerable number of grocery purchases along with the beer, wine and spirits. It is very common to see people come through the department and buy $20+ worth of mainly junk food and pay for that with EBT and then pay cash for $30+ dollars worth of cigarettes, beer or liquor. I even had one young woman come through and purchase $40 worth of baby formula with a WIC coupon and then pay $100 cash for a keg of beer. Aside from a few little old ladies living on Social Security who limit their EBT purchases to actual food items, most EBT customers are buying either junk food like soda, chips and candy or are buying steaks and crab legs ..I’ve seen it all. If Michelle Obama wanted to seriously address obesity she should push to limit EBT purchases to healthy food items similar to the WIC program.
I just showed you today's, right this instant, price for generic branded chicken & pork hotdogs at Peapod (Giant Food home delivery) in Chantilly, Virginia USA. That's right in your backyard.
Here's today's, right this instant, price for frozen lobster tail at Peapod.
I'm calling this hand. Show me what you're holding.
Frankly speaking, I prefer all pork wieners ~ which are much higher priced than these things ~ but if pressed, I'll eat beef ~ but around here those are all pushing $3.99 a pound.
We've had lobster for less this summer.
>>Currently lobster is cheaper than hotdogs.<<
Not in MI, which is where that receipt is from.
I live here.
Parts is parts.
Yeah, that is a seriously large loophole.
I don’t disagree with most of your post and the other ideas in this thread. However, if the subsidies were eliminated so that the market would rule, prices would likely increase for everyone on all products.
Supply would not increase and demand would stay the same. The margins for the retailers are already low. Even basic foods need some processing, even if it is only washing the potatoes or bagging the rice, flour and beans.
I believe the only reason ground beef is even available is that there are scraps from butchering, plus unsold cuts that must be moved before they spoil or else be frozen to be sold at a lower price because they had previously been frozen. Produce has a short shelf life as it is. I do not even understand why there can be a huge selection of both fresh and frozen skinless, boneless chicken breasts while it is sometimes hard to even find bone-in chicken breasts, which are more expensive. I would think that the processing would raise the price. I think produce that was at the limit of its shelf life would naturally be sold for less or even given away rather than have to throw it out. I know some small stores do this already. Even excess lettuce and other greens can be braised and pureed to be used as sauce or stock base.
People really need to be taught to cook from scratch and how to utilize anything available. These classes could be a requirement for benefits. Those who know how to cook and stretch food could teach those who don’t and, in return, receive some sort of incentive. My area has community garden plots available. People could be taught how to cut up a whole chicken. It isn’t difficult.
Quality produce is available at Aldi’s for 1/3—1/2 less than the exact same item at another nearby store. Last time I shopped there, the quality of the produce at Aldi’s was superior to that at other stores.
My own preference would be for monthly commodity distribution at the grocery store, since I don’t believe the government even maintains stockpiles any longer. Perhaps the recipient could be qualified for different amounts of different commodities, depending on income, age, family size. I remember when commodities were all there was. Families might distribute any excess to relatives who were struggling, but not qualified. Some folks received more of certain items than they could eat, so they gave it to their adult children.
My state still has asset limits as to cash in the bank and investments. Single, unmarried women w/children must name the father to qualify for more than WIC. I think you are allowed a house, a car w/a low resale value and a life insurance policy, plus $25k in cash assets, but I am unsure if this is actually implemented equitably across the state. I think urban people receive more than rural ones, but again, this is anecdotal. I do know that SNAP benefits seem to vary between counties.
I like the way the Mormons handle this. They require work in exchange for food and they have lots of work available. By working, people also acquire skills.
Can you give us some details?
Using the card to buy food for somebody else for cash I already know about. I'm going to guess that some number of these women work as housekeepers/babysitters for people (off the books), and use their EBT card when shopping for their employers (getting reimbursed in cash).
I also figure that many of these women are getting multiple benefits using multiple addresses. One needed reform would be to fingerprint recipients and cross-match new applicants with old ones. It would need to be nationwide so that people couldn't scam it by moving to different states.
http://www.wickedlocal.com/mansfield/news/x1400282800/Low-lobster-prices-mean-big-savings-for-area-shoppers#axzz21jdgSjnR $3.99 a pound. BTW, bad tasting hot dogs do not qualify for comparison. Then there’s Polska Kielbasa (the prototype for the hotdog) and it’s $3.99 a pound as well ~ see: http://www.shoprite.com/pd/Hillshire-Farm/Polska-Kielbasa/16-oz/044500331219/
You must go in for consultation with a case worker to get reinstated.
Since there's a Koinkydink between welfare and foodstamp programs, it pretty much means you got cut off.
Just before Congress passed Welfare Reform the USPS began setting up to implement Fast Forward. What that did was evaluate large mailing lists to make sure USPS wasn't being given whole lots of mail that had to be returned because the outgoing addresses were bad.
When they ran the state welfare list against the system at Richmond VA (I was there, on site, watching this happen) 50% of the addresses were found to involve a forwarding order. That automatically cut off their welfare!
As you recall the welfare cut nationwide was about 50%.
I think it took all of 45 minutes for the welfare folks in Richmond to pass the word to everybody else in the country.
Congress took credit for the cut. I saw it happen before Congress acted.
The Leftwingtards used to argue that fraud in welfare was miniscule ~ that these were truly poor people in poor neighborhoods. Turned out, though, that half the welfare money was going to fraud!
I couldn't stand to eat chicken of any kind for several years, and then only well cooked chicken ~ really well cooked chicken.
Let me tell you, ain't no thang like 'em air chicken plants ~ ours was full of hillbillies, those folks then serving as the low cost alternative to trained help.
They've been replaced by Mexicans, of coure, who work for even less, but I can tell you MOST of them ~ whatever their origin ~ will find it difficult to just sit down and eat chicken unless they are really gut gnawing growling hungry!
Only chicken dog I'll eat is one I have seen prepared from the meat up!
There is currently a glut on the market so prices crashed.
The lobster price thing has made national news so many times I find it hard to believe folks missed it ~ now, in Michigan, your best bet (soon) is crawdads. Should be a lot of them.
It doesn’t matter how much it is selling for. To most people, it is considered a gourmet food and EBT recipients are not worthy. Those people will not be happy until the “down on their luck” recipients are eating gruel, moldy bread and unflavored water.
Nice pun. I got that. ;'}
Frankly, I prefer a lot of things. When money is tight, I don't get what I prefer. I get what I can afford. Apparently, that's good enough for folks who earn their money but folks who take money by government force or threat thereof deserve better than the folks from whom they are taking.
Now ... WHERE ... exactly and specifically, did you "have" lobster for less than US$3.99/lb?
“Anyone receiving govt. assistance should not be allowed to vote.”
As long as Social Security and Medicare are included, as they are now welfare programs because they are taking from today’s (and tomorrow’s) workers.
Guess we can all drive up to Massachusetts and pick up our cheap lobster ... It'll be a real bargain.
BTW, bad tasting hot dogs do not qualify for comparison.
Sure they do. When money is tight (or when you're taking money from other folks by force or threat thereof) you get what you can afford, not what you want.
What if there's no change of address notification sent to the post office, since the welfare cheats know about this rule too? What if Tashika applies for benefits in NY, using her mom's address? Then she goes to her sister Dashika in New Jersey and applies through her sister's address? And then goes to her cousin LaToya in Philadelphia and applies from THAT address as well?
As far as any government office is concerned, she's still living at each address. Once a month, she hops on a bus and makes the rounds, visiting each place, cashing in her benefits, and moving on.
This is why I'd like fingerprints and other biometic identification for each welfare recipient, cross referenced nationwide, and tied with INS.
Does anyone know if you can buy pet food with EBT? Just curious. I read an article recently that listed the dollar amount you can receive per person in the household. It was some sort of welfare challenge for a wealthy person. Anyway, I tallied up how much money I would receive and it was about $300 more than my monthly grocery budget. That kind of made me mad. We don’t eat out. I cook everything from scratch. No convenience foods for us!
I would love to see some kind of reform. I would love to see classes required or cookbooks printed or menu planners for how to efficiently use the food you are given so there is less waste. I wouldn’t mind separate stores entirely with approved foods-healthy foods-all ready to be picked up. It could still be set up like a grocery store so you are allowed to purchase only what you need and don’t wind up with twenty pounds of pasta and cheese. I suppose it would be easier to just slap ‘EBT APPROVED’ stickers on food. Yes. Change is needed. Help should be available but it should be uncomfortable enough to keep you motivated to better yourself.