Thursday, October 2, 2008

Food Stamps Help More Texans, But Still Hard to Eat Healthy

Last month, many Houstonians made hungry and homeless by Hurricane Ike learned the hard way how tough it is to get food stamps. Federal rules for the program bar anyone earning more than 130% of the poverty line (about $22,880 for a family of three) from receiving help, yet many thousands of new applicants still lined up at HHSC offices following the storm. 

Helpfully, those who were found eligible are now getting a boost, according to HHSC's website. To help get storm victims back on their feet, Texas has received permission to increase the monthly benefit amount by as much as $331 per family. 

This is great news for those who have lost so much, as Molly Rueter from KLTV News can attest. Molly took the "Food Stamp Challenge" in September, limiting her shopping to the average individual food stamps amount (roughly $1/meal). What she learned was sobering - fruits and vegetables "just cost too much," she wrote "so eating healthy was definitely difficult."

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