It’s the end of the road for over 6,000 childless, able-bodied residents who have enjoyed regular free food on the taxpayer dollar. The Maine Department of Health and Human Services just told them it’s time to get up and do something to earn their keep or go hungry.
According to the Portland Press Herald, Maine’s Republican governor, Paul LePage, announced Wednesday that the state will now impose a work requirement on welfare recipients without dependents, which must be fulfilled in order to receive food stamps. All adults without a disability must have to actually work for food, volunteer twenty hours per week, or enroll in an employment training program if they want to ensure their EBT card (Electronic Benefits Transfer) is loaded each month. People under the age of 18 and over 50 are excluded from that law.
This law was on the table in the past but was put on hold six years ago in 2008, when Maine asked the Federal Government for a waiver from the rule because of the state’s high unemployment rate and anemic job market caused by the recession. However, this year LePage reinstated it, explaining that it is in the best interest of Maine’s limited resources, as well as getting people back to work.
“We must continue to do all that we can to eliminate generational poverty and get people back to work,” Governor Paul LePaige said in a statement on the decision. “We must protect our limited resources for those who are truly in need and who are doing all they can to be self-sufficient.”
DHHS Commissioner Mary Mayhew said, “This is complying with federal requirements, but it’s also about Governor LePage’s focus on how do we make this about prosperity? How do we focus on lifting people out of poverty so they can benefit from this economy.”
As to be expected, the change is not sitting well with many one-time recipients who are affected by this change in law. The entitlement mentality riddled with pathetic excuses for lazy behavior is particularly evident from Maine resident Melania, who whined about how she was particularly disturbed by the news that she would have to do something in order to receive her special “expensive” food. “I was just so upset after I got the phone call. It was a cushion especially for me because I have dietary restrictions; I have a lot of them, and the food is very expensive,” she explained. Melania had been receiving $224 per month for nothing and now just does not think it’s fair to have to put an effort forth for it.
Without question, the food stamp program has its purpose. The intent was never for it to make life easier on those who don’t want to participate in becoming self-sufficient. Welfare was designed as a temporary solution to cover the very basic necessities, allowing individuals to get back on their feet. This law prevents individuals from abusing the system at the expense of those who work hard so they don’t have to. People who don’t have children, a disability, or a viable excuse not to do something for themselves, are the individuals impacted by the law, and it’s about time a change was made to stop their gravy train.
Let us know what you think about this new law in the comments. Please share this article with others if you feel Maine got it right.