Thursday, June 23, 2005

Innovative approaches to promote food security for the elderly

Kadesha Thomas writes today for the Boston Globe:
Tomorrow, 30,000 disabled, elderly Massachusetts residents are expected to receive letters in the mail telling them about their eligibility for new hassle-free food stamps.

The pilot project, called Bay State Combined Application Project, or CAP, seeks to boost the state's low participation rate in the food stamp program by providing electronic food stamp cards to elderly, disabled recipients of Supplemental Security Income benefits -- without them waiting in long lines or filling out lengthy applications. Another 38,000 disabled seniors will be eligible for the program at the end of summer.

Food stamp participation in Massachusetts is the lowest in the nation, with 39 percent of those eligible getting their share of $30 million in federal food assistance, according to the state Department of Transitional Assistance.
Thomas took my statistics class this past semester at the Friedman School. Here's more on food stamp participation rates in general, and for the elderly in particular (.pdf).

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