Governor-Elect Edwards Seeks to Stop Changes to Food Stamp Eligibility
Governor-elect John Bel Edwards is already putting his stamp on the new regime in Baton Rouge as he is taking steps so that low-income families do not lose their food stamp benefits in January.
The Jindal administration took action to block able bodied adults who are unemployed and have no dependents from receiving food stamps. However, according to Julie Baxter Payer, spokesperson for Governor-elect Edwards, he will seek to remove the work requirement so that an estimated 31,000 adults can still have access to food stamps.
"The IT systems and the computers programs have already been programmed for people to lose their benefits on January 1, we can try and walk that back," Payer said.
Payer says Edwards wants to provide food stamps to able bodied adults for at least one year, until they improve state worker training programs. Until that time, she says, these individuals should continue to receive this federal assistance.
"His transition committee on children and family services urged him that this is a really important step for some of the poorest adults in our state, who face significant barriers to employment in our state," Payer said.
Governor Jindal's spokesperson, Mike Reed, says the best way to break the cycle of poverty is for individuals to get a job and get off of government assistance.