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In Florida, a food-stamp recruiter deals with wrenching choices
The Washington Post ^ | April 23, 2013 | Eli Saslow

Posted on 04/24/2013 11:18:14 AM PDT by Hojczyk

In fact, it is Nerios’s job to enroll at least 150 seniors for food stamps each month, a quota she usually exceeds. Alleviate hunger, lessen poverty: These are the primary goals of her work. But the job also has a second and more controversial purpose for cash-strapped Florida, where increasing food-stamp enrollment has become a means of economic growth, bringing almost $6 billion each year into the state.

Rhode Island hosts SNAP-themed bingo games for the elderly. Alabama hands out fliers that read: “Be a patriot. Bring your food stamp money home.” Three states in the Midwest throw food-stamp parties where new recipients sign up en masse.

On the Treasure Coast of Florida, the official outreach plan is mostly just Nerios, who works for a local food bank that is funded in part by the state. She roams four counties of sandbars and barrier islands in her Ford Escape, with an audio Bible in the CD player and a windshield sticker that reads “Faith, Hope and Love.” She distributes hundreds of fliers each week, giving out her personal cellphone number and helping seniors submit SNAP applications on her laptop.

A Korean War veteran on oxygen who mostly wanted to talk, so Nerios listened: 32 years in the military, a sergeant major, Germany, Iron Curtain, medals and awards. “A hell of a life,” the veteran said. “So if I signed up, what would I tell my wife?”

“Tell her you’re an American and this is your benefit,” Nerios said, pulling him away from the crowd, so he could write the 26th name of the day on her SNAP sign-up sheet.

(Excerpt) Read more at washingtonpost.com ...


TOPICS: Crime/Corruption
KEYWORDS:

1 posted on 04/24/2013 11:18:14 AM PDT by Hojczyk
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To: Hojczyk

“Be a patriot. Bring your food stamp money home.”

It’s over, we’ve lost the soul of this nation.


2 posted on 04/24/2013 11:19:54 AM PDT by Huskrrrr
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To: Hojczyk
In fact, it is Nerios’s job to enroll at least 150 seniors for food stamps each month, a quota she usually exceeds.

This is so wrong.

3 posted on 04/24/2013 11:22:22 AM PDT by from occupied ga (Your government is your most dangerous enemy)
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To: Hojczyk

This is one of the many things for which you can thank the Federal Reserve.


4 posted on 04/24/2013 11:24:39 AM PDT by PGR88
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To: Hojczyk

I’d rather have the elderly get it than a bunch of freeloading people who refuse to work.

Yeah, I said that.


5 posted on 04/24/2013 11:27:45 AM PDT by AppyPappy (You never see a massacre at a gun show.)
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To: from occupied ga

There should be NO such thing as a recruiter for government benefits.

If a person is in need, their family needs to provide help or actively contact someone to provide the help from a program, if necessary.


6 posted on 04/24/2013 11:29:23 AM PDT by MrB (The difference between a Humanist and a Satanist - the latter admits whom he's working for)
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To: MrB
There should be NO such thing as a recruiter for government benefits.

AGREED! There should be people who actively DISCOURGE people from getting government benefits.

7 posted on 04/24/2013 11:34:49 AM PDT by from occupied ga (Your government is your most dangerous enemy)
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To: from occupied ga
But the job also has a second and more controversial purpose for cash-strapped Florida, where increasing food-stamp enrollment has become a means of economic growth, bringing almost $6 billion each year into the state.

This is even more wrong.

8 posted on 04/24/2013 11:35:04 AM PDT by Lazamataz ("AP" clearly stands for American Pravda. Our news media has become completely and proudly Soviet.)
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To: MrB

I knew a woman who spent many years on welfare. She was upset that her 18 year old son had to go down to sign up for “benefits”. Her complaint was that when he turned 18 he should have been automatically enrolled.

I almost fell off my chair.


9 posted on 04/24/2013 11:35:41 AM PDT by Straight Vermonter (Posting from deep behind the Maple Curtain)
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To: from occupied ga
There should be people who actively DISCOURGE people from getting government benefits.

By the general name of "clergymen".

10 posted on 04/24/2013 11:36:13 AM PDT by MrB (The difference between a Humanist and a Satanist - the latter admits whom he's working for)
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To: Lazamataz
This is even more wrong.

TRUE. That $6b is coming out of someone else's pocket, and not voluntarily.

11 posted on 04/24/2013 11:36:54 AM PDT by from occupied ga (Your government is your most dangerous enemy)
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To: Straight Vermonter
She was upset that her 18 year old son had to go down to sign up for “benefits”. Her complaint was that when he turned 18 he should have been automatically enrolled

"The only reason that some people are still alive is that it is against the law to kill them." Mark Twain

12 posted on 04/24/2013 11:38:08 AM PDT by from occupied ga (Your government is your most dangerous enemy)
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To: from occupied ga

You’ll be shocked to hear that we ended up supporting the guy with 3 hots and a cot for much of the last 30+ years.


13 posted on 04/24/2013 11:40:11 AM PDT by Straight Vermonter (Posting from deep behind the Maple Curtain)
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To: Hojczyk

Furloughs for air traffic controllers, Soldiers, and geologists.

Fully funded EBT cards for an increasing number of shiftless bums.

FUBO.


14 posted on 04/24/2013 11:46:02 AM PDT by ArrogantBustard (Western Civilization is Aborting, Buggering, and Contracepting itself out of existence.)
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To: Straight Vermonter
You’ll be shocked to hear that we ended up supporting the guy with 3 hots and a cot for much of the last 30+ years.

Why am I not surprised.

15 posted on 04/24/2013 11:50:41 AM PDT by from occupied ga (Your government is your most dangerous enemy)
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To: from occupied ga

Is this really true? Is there such a thing as a food stamp recruiter? With quotas? If she consistently exceeds her quota, I wonder if she gets a bonus. Or maybe commissions? We now live in a looney bin.


16 posted on 04/24/2013 11:59:33 AM PDT by privatedrive
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To: AppyPappy

My former neighbor, who had a bunch of kids and whose husband was killed in a robbery when they were all small. Made it to her senior years with virtually no money. I was okay with her being on food stamps. Not many others.


17 posted on 04/24/2013 12:05:05 PM PDT by Buckeye McFrog
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To: Hojczyk
I have no problem with the US having a safety blanket for people. But I kind of draw the line when you hear that three generations of a family have lived on welfare and food stamps.

There's nothing wrong with helping people get back on their feet although I think the Church probably does a better job with far less overhead.

They'd probably save money if they taught these people a trade or something.

A Korean War veteran on oxygen who mostly wanted to talk, so Nerios listened: 32 years in the military, a sergeant major, Germany, Iron Curtain, medals and awards. “A hell of a life,” the veteran said. “So if I signed up, what would I tell my wife?”

How is this possible? Thirty five years in the military he should have retirement benefits (he retired as a SGT Major) as well as healthcare. It's not a ton of money but he should be able to live on it and social security.

18 posted on 04/24/2013 12:10:19 PM PDT by Lx (Do you like it, do you like it. Scott? I call it Mr. and Mrs. Tennerman chili.)
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To: from occupied ga
This is so wrong.

You can see why they do it, though. Get that entitlement hook set firm and deep, so it's less likely that we'll ever change this nation's course.

Sadly, they're maximizing the number of people who will be hurt when this house of cards finally collapses.

19 posted on 04/24/2013 12:13:12 PM PDT by Charles Martel (Endeavor to persevere...)
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To: AppyPappy

I agree and I am sympathetic to the couple profiled in this article. However, if these were my parents, I would insist they live with me and my family and I’d move to a cheaper town if that’s what we had to do to get more room. Children love their grandparents and grandparents even contribute economically to a family by babysitting and freeing up both parents to work longer hours (if need be).

No way in hell would I let my parents be profiled in this type of article.


20 posted on 04/24/2013 12:17:18 PM PDT by utahagen
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To: Hojczyk

“Liberals measure compassion by how many people are given welfare. Conservatives measure compassion by how many people no longer need it.” - Rush Limbaugh


21 posted on 04/24/2013 12:18:50 PM PDT by dfwgator
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To: Lx

Family is the safety net....But the government has gone all out to destroy that.


22 posted on 04/24/2013 12:19:33 PM PDT by dfwgator
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To: privatedrive

They used to run radio adds to get people to sign up for food stamps. I haven’t heard any for years. Probably they figured out that conservatives were the listening audience and they moved to other means of getting the word out.


23 posted on 04/24/2013 12:19:46 PM PDT by listenhillary (Courts, law enforcement, roads and national defense should be the extent of government)
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To: utahagen

Yes but this is the Social Security generation. “When I get old, the government will take care of me.”


24 posted on 04/24/2013 12:22:51 PM PDT by AppyPappy (You never see a massacre at a gun show.)
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To: Hojczyk

“A Korean War veteran on oxygen who mostly wanted to talk, so Nerios listened: 32 years in the military, a sergeant major, Germany, Iron Curtain, medals and awards. “A hell of a life,” the veteran said. “So if I signed up, what would I tell my wife?” “

Two things struck me about this passage:

-If anyone’s earned a little something extra from the government, it’s this guy. Yet he still has the pride and core instinct to not want to do it. Not one iota of “I’m entitled” or “the government owes me a living” from this man.

-What kind of setup do we have where a Sgt. Major who served his country for over 3 decades should have to even consider needing food stamps?


25 posted on 04/24/2013 12:30:01 PM PDT by DemforBush (Bring me the head of Alfredo Garcia!)
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To: Lx

That’s whatr I was thinking. He should have retirement pay, privileges at the PX, health care (VA)etc. etc. thirty-two years sounds odd unless he was retired because of health but even then...


26 posted on 04/24/2013 12:30:09 PM PDT by squarebarb ( Fairy tales are basically true.)
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To: Hojczyk
This is so insane.

I could rant, but I won't. But I have to ask: How on earth does a 32-year military veteran (that's a pension of 80% of his final base pay) retired E-9, who also is probably getting some Social Security, qualify for Food Stamps?

27 posted on 04/24/2013 12:35:30 PM PDT by magellan
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To: Buckeye McFrog

“My former neighbor, who had a bunch of kids and whose husband was killed in a robbery when they were all small.”

Was he the robber or the robbee ?


28 posted on 04/24/2013 12:41:55 PM PDT by PLMerite (Shut the Beyotch Down! Burn, baby, burn!)
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To: Hojczyk

And the money they used to spend to feed themselves goes straight into the casinos.


29 posted on 04/24/2013 12:44:01 PM PDT by riri (Plannedopolis-look it up. It's how the elites plan for US to live.)
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To: AppyPappy
I’d rather have the elderly get ...Yeah, I said that.

And I'll echo it. I went thru the slide show at the posted website and all the pics were of elderly people. There are resources out there but these people are not aware of them and likely have no family to help them and like the lady said, some are too proud to even ask.

I play senior softball here outside of Detroit and guys are getting together to play pick up ball. There is one semi-crazy guy we call Jimmie the Cab Driver who falls in the above category.

Last fall he took a bus for Texas to live with his niece. He was just kicked out so he came back here the only people he knows are us softball players.

He's a Vietnam vet whose total monthly income is only about $735.00. About $580 from social security and another $150. from his military disability. One of the guys picked him up at the Detroit bus station and found a cheap motel room for him for a couple days till his money ran out.

Then they found a church for him to stay in at night for a couple more days......Meanwhile another guy was callin everywhere trying to get help for Jimmie, the VA, the Vietnam Veterans Assn., the state of Michigan, on and on and on......

We succeeded in getting him on a list with the VA for housing but they said it might take anywhere from 6 months to a year. We got him applied for a Bridge card which will get him more money for food each month and the state or VA will also give him more money.

Meanwhile, it all came to a head when he showed up at the park last Friday while we were playing. He had run out of money and had to leave the motel we had found for him so he walked to a nearby coney island for the evening until it closed then he walked over to the park where we play ball and slept under a picnic table that night....After we found that out on Friday, another one of the guys stepped in to help. From what I've heard since then, we got Jimmy a place to stay with the Salvation Army in downtown Detroit but we don't know how long they will keep him.

It's a long story and just gets more complicated so I guess the point I'm trying to make is that yes, there are elderly people in need whose life circumstances were far different than ours and there are more than anyone can imagine.

Knowing Jimmy the Cab Driver for the past few years, I think I've gained some insight into how the homeless street people think.

Jimmy has no posessions whatsoever except a few clothes in a handbag and his softball glove. All he lives for now is to play softball, it doesn't matter to him if he eats or not or has a room to sleep in which is evidenced by his willingness to sleep under a picnic table in the cold. He asks for nothing and wants for nothing. As long as he can play softball he is happy............but he's a pain in the ass to the rest of us.

30 posted on 04/24/2013 1:08:39 PM PDT by Hot Tabasco (This space for rent)
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To: Lx
"How is this possible? Thirty five years in the military he should have retirement benefits (he retired as a SGT Major) as well as healthcare. It's not a ton of money but he should be able to live on it and social security."

He should be getting about $50,000 per year in military retirement as an E-9 with 32 years of service retiring in 1982 (based on his comment he was a Korean War veteran).

That would make him born in 1932 (80 years old). He could have been born earlier, but probably not too much earlier. He could have been born a couple of years later (the Korean War lasted until 1953). But either way, the $50K/year number will be close.

The military paid into Social Security since 1957, so he should have considerable Social Security contributions from his military career.

Also, if he retired from the military in 1982-1985 at age 50, he may have also had a second career, with more Social Security contributions, and potentially another retirement or savings.

31 posted on 04/24/2013 1:13:07 PM PDT by magellan
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To: utahagen

” However, if these were my parents, I would insist they live with me”

My parents generation hated that idea. My mom outright refused to live with any of us.


32 posted on 04/24/2013 1:23:34 PM PDT by AppyPappy (You never see a massacre at a gun show.)
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