Monday, December 22, 2008

Food Stamps Rise, TX Cuts Privatization Ties

Last week the Texas Health and Human Services Commission (HHSC) cut its ties to corporate giants Maximus and Accenture in a settlement designed to recoup losses and formally end their involvement in a new eligibility system for food stamps recipients.

The system, which has been sharply criticized by editorial boards, elected officials and advocates for the poor, is an attempt to use high technology and privatized call centers to substitute for several years of staffing cuts at HHSC.

Despite continuing difficulties in the new system (which one advocate referred to as being in "total disarray"), the worsening economy is forcing many new families to go through the application process anyway:
As the economy worsens, opines the Corpus Christi Caller-Times, "Texas, more than ever, needs a social safety net that works."

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