Indiana to Start Requiring Food Stamp Recipients to Work

Indiana will eliminate exemptions that require food stamp recipients look for work, a rules change that could see up to 65,000 food stamp recipients trimmed from the roles.

The federal Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) does require what many in the past have called “workfare”–requiring recipients to get job training, or show proof that they are looking for a job to qualify for food stamps. The states, however, have been given wide discretion in how they implement the law and have been allowed to make any manner of exemptions for citizens to escape this requirement. Up until now Indiana had issued fairly wide exemptions.

Now, as of 2015, the Indiana Family and Social Services Administration has announced that the work requirements in SNAP will be more strictly enforced, meaning that as many as 65,000 recipients may be cut off.

Indiana’s new mandate maintains that, “any able-bodied Indiana adult without children will need to be working at least 20 hours a week, be in job training, or searching for employment in order to qualify.”