Major changes coming soon to Wisconsin’s FoodShare program.
Starting April 1st, FoodShare recipients ages 18 to 49 (who do not have any minor children) will be required to work for their benefits.
The work requirement rules will affect members who have a renewal or apply for FoodShare benefits on and after April 1st, 2015.
If you are an adult age 18 through 49, there are four ways you can meet your work requirement:
- Work at least 80 hours each month.
- Take part in an allowable work program such as FSET, Wisconsin Works (W-2) or certain programs under the Workforce Investment Act (WIA) at least 80 hours each month.
- Both work and take part in an allowable work program for a combined total of at least 80 hours each month.
- Take part in and meet the requirements of a workfare program.
Those who choose not to meet the work requirement will only get three months of FoodShare benefits in a 36-month (three-year) period until they meet the work requirement, become exempt, or the 36-month period has passed.
Able-bodied adults will be enrolled in FSET when their case comes up for annual review and will then be eligible to receive FoodShare for 90 days in any 36-month period. The 90 days do not need to be consecutive, but once reached, a FoodShare recipient’s case is automatically closed.
Opponents say cutting off benefits will increase visits to local food pantries and soup kitchens. Some are worried those resources will run dry.
“In April of 2016, we anticipate that our network of charities will begin to experience food shortage,” Hunger Task Force Executive Director Sherrie Tussler said.
According to the Hunger Task Force, at least 66,000 people in Wisconsin will be affected by the changes.
Leave it to Wisconsin, Scott Walker’s state, to get the ball rolling. This is a good start and they need to focus on all those stay-at-home moms who make a career out of living off the government and then go after the frauds on disability.
On the flip side, watch for the affected women to start making babies any minute now.