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It is not a crime to be poor in the United States, but according to a report from the Supportive Parents Information Network (SPIN), many San Diego applicants for the San Diego County Health and Human Services Agency food-stamps program say they felt like criminals when they applied for food stamps.

The report, “Hunger & the Safety Net in San Diego County,” released in January, found that the application process of applying for aid in San Diego County was offensive to many applicants, even when the staff treated them respectfully.

Applicants to California’s Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) are required to be fingerprinted to help prevent fraud. (California is one of the three states in the nation that require fingerprinting for food stamps.) Recipients of Temporary Assistance for Needy Families (TANF) are required to have their home searched by a welfare-fraud investigator from the district attorney’s office before receiving any public benefits; fingerprinting is mandatory as well. According to SPIN member Bill Oswald, fingerprinting costs the state 17 million dollars a year.

On Thursday, December 2, the panel members who coauthored the report held a meeting at the First Unitarian Universalist Church in Hillcrest to discuss the politics of hunger and poverty in San Diego.

The U.S. Department of Agriculture, which operates the federal food-stamps program, has identified our county as having the worst program in the country; the County acknowledged that in their annual “Report Card on Children and Families” in 2009.

The report card, released on February 9, 2010, states, “Since 2006, San Diego County substantially increased the number of eligible children receiving food assistance through SNAP, as have the state and nation. Still, our county has the lowest participation rate of any large urban area in the nation, with only 35 percent of eligible households participating in 2007.”

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Comments

SurfPuppy619 Dec. 4, 2010 @ 3:37 p.m.

San Diego County does an AWFUL job of administering the foodstamp program.

It just goes to show you that the gov cannot do anything right.

In addition for every 20 cents given out in FGS aid, it takes $1 of overhead to administer-that is not a very good ratio-in fact if it were a charity it would be considered a fraud.

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a2zresource Dec. 6, 2010 @ 4:03 p.m.

Count me as one who will never attempt to apply for any county assistance ever again. In fact, the County of San Diego's Health and Human Services Agency is the reason why I will never go back to any hospital except VA La Jolla for any purpose, including another heart attack, of which cardiologists at Sharp Chula Vista informed me to expect many more to come... if I don't die first.

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Founder Dec. 10, 2010 @ 6:03 p.m.

With so may "flawed" groups to deal with it's no wonder that many, many folks are now talking about where to relocate and most locations they are talking about retiring to are outside the US!

Please take care of yourself, you are one of SD's treasures!

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SurfPuppy619 Dec. 10, 2010 @ 8:10 p.m.

Count me as one who will never attempt to apply for any county assistance ever again. In fact, the County of San Diego's Health and Human Services Agency is the reason why I will never go back to any hospital

Your experiences would likely be identical to 9 out of 10 who have applied for aid in this county.

It also really irks me to hear all these yahoo's claim that people flock to CA to go on the welfare rolls. That is flat out false.

It really amazes me that these people think most Americans would try to leech off the gov instead of doing an honest days work. I have never thought that-and never will.

IMO the vast majority of Americans would prefer to have a job and earn their way though life, making their own way and earning an honest days pay.

It pains me, and makes me feel sorry for our country that so many Americans think their fellow Americans are leeches-not true IMO!

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Founder Dec. 11, 2010 @ 7:21 a.m.

Well Said The State and Feds have made it so hard to get any benefits that most folks just get frustrated and stop applying because they do not want to deal with the "system" that is actually set up to empower those that work "in" the system instead of those who need the system.

One can see this in City Gov't., County Gov't, State Gov't. and the Federal Gov't., it's no wonder that all sorts of "fringe" groups are sprouting up across the Country as more and more folks now have no other outlet for their frustration...

Life in America during the 1950s and 1960s was far different from what it is today, and if things don't turn around real quick, those days will be looked at as the "BEST" times our Country ever had before we became a Third World Country!

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SurfPuppy619 Dec. 11, 2010 @ 1:42 p.m.

Most counties are decent in delivering social services, but San Diego is the bottom of the barrel. I agree, the cost to implement the "system" here is a major problem.

Of the country doesn't start turning around our manufucturng base, like back in the 50's, 60's and part of the 70's, then we are going to fail. That is the bottom line.

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Founder Dec. 12, 2010 @ 12:03 p.m.

If that were to happen; where would you be thinking of relocating and how bad would it have to get "here" before you started packing?

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jerome Dec. 10, 2010 @ 4:04 p.m.

ya got a point there az,....... looking foward for better health for you keep that stress to a minimum stay outtta wars

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