Welfare Reform

Topics: Unemployment, Welfare, Conditional Cash Transfer Pages: 6 (2059 words) Published: March 15, 2013

The social welfare system grew after President Lyndon Johnson introduced new public programs such as food stamps and Medicaid. When the new public programs began, almost every low income family was to receive of some public assistance (Tanner 93). The U.S. has spent more than $3.5 trillion to prevent poverty ever since the war on poverty in 1965 (Tanner 92). The welfare system has wasted a lot of money over the years. Almost everyone knows that the social welfare system has been a failure. The welfare system wastes billions of dollars each year from welfare recipients abusing the system. Some welfare recipients abuse the welfare system by illegally selling food stamps to buy cigarettes, drugs, and alcohol, having unreported income from a boyfriend or family members or through a full or part-time jobs, and subsidized housing (Payne 55). Governmental welfare needs to be eliminated or reformed due to the abuse and fraud of food stamps, public housing, and unemployment.

Conversely, the welfare system helps low income families by providing food and free medical help or medical bill payments. The Aid to Families with Dependent Children (AFDC) is one of the welfare organizations that helps low-income families (Tanner 93). AFDC helps to provide food by giving food stamps to purchase food. Food stamps let welfare recipients purchase food for free or at a very low cost, which the government pays for. Also, the welfare system will provide free medical help to lower income families by free check-ups, surgeries, or medications. If a lower income family cannot pay for a medical bill, then the government will pay the bill or pay a part of it depending on the income of the family. Qualifying families that are considered to have low income can get help from the welfare system.

However, the welfare system needs to either reform or change its programs starting with food stamps. The government should reform the regulations for food stamps to help stop or prevent the abuse of the welfare system such as trafficking. Trafficking is illegally selling food stamps for money to buy drugs, alcohol, and cigarettes (Payne 56). An estimated ten percent of benefits are trafficked according to the General Accounting Office (GAO) (Payne 56-57). To stop trafficking, the government should put the person’s name and the ID number on the food stamps. By putting the person’s name and ID number on the food stamps, the food stamps can only be used by that person because when the person goes to pay or checkout at a store they will have to show their ID card to the cashier. Having the person’s name and ID number on their food stamps will help stop trafficking. Also, by reforming the regulations for food stamps it will help the misuse of food stamps. A former Wal-Mart cashier stated that the best place to see the waste, abuse, and fraud of food stamps is at the checkout line of Wal-Mart (McDurmon). The former Wal-Mart employee has witnessed a man that purchased hotdogs, mustard, ketchup, and buns for his hotdogs stand and paid for it with food stamps (McDurmon). Needless to say the state is paying for his business by buying the hotdogs, buns, mustard, and ketchup, therefore food stamp regulations or program needs to change.

Furthermore, the welfare system needs to eliminate food stamps. With the government eliminating food stamps, there would not be any problems with people abusing food stamps, and it would not cost taxpayers money. Welfare recipients abuse food stamps repeatedly. The people that receive food stamps make excessive purchases like lobsters, steaks, and giant birthday cakes (McDurmon). If a person receives welfare they should not get the privilege to buy expensive foods because the state is paying for it. A former cashier at Wal-Mart said that so many people that were talking on their iPhones have ignored her in the checkout line, and of course the state paid for their food (McDurmon). An iPhone costs at least two hundred dollars or more, and...
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