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Myths about the Food Stamp Program

There are many reasons why people don't use the Food Stamp program, even though they are eligible. Here are a few of the myths and the facts:

Myth 1: I own a house and a car, I won't qualify.

Fact: Your house and your furniture do not count as cashable assets. One car per adult household member does not count when determining your eligibility.

Myth 2: I can't get Food Stamps because I make too much money.

Fact: The Food Stamp program looks at both your income and your expenses. The program gives deductions for things like child care and utilities.

Myth 3: I can't get Food Stamps because I'm homeless.

Fact: Even if you don't have a telephone number or address, you can receive Food Stamps. Your caseworker will help figure out how to get the benefits to you.

Myth 4: It's not worth the effort to sign up; I heard I'll only get $10.

Fact: In New Hampshire, the average grant for people over 60 is $149.98. Nationally, the average food stamp household received $272 per month. If you don't spend your food stamp award during the month, it can be carried over to the next month.

Myth 5: I can't get Food Stamps because I don't have any children.

Fact: Over 44% of food stamp recipients do not have children.

Myth 6: I can't get Food Stamps because I'm not on welfare.

 Fact: The majority of Food Stamp households do not receive any other type of assistance.

Beyond these common myths, individuals and families may also have reservations about signing up for this program which include:

I don't want food stamps because people will see me using them.

Solution: while old food stamps came as coupons, the new food stamps are available on a debit card. Your purchases will be deducted from the card, and it will be the same as paying with a credit card or bank-issued debit card.

I don't want to take benefits away from a needy family.

Solution: anyone and everyone that qualifies will be able to receive food stamp benefits. No one will receive fewer benefits if you sign up to receive them as well, so you are not taking anything away from anyone who needs it.

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