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Should Food Stamp Recipients Have to Work?

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Clark Davis
WV Public Broadcasting

Should able-bodied West Virginia adults receive food stamps? And if so, should they be required to work or volunteer to get them?

Front Porch host Rick Wilson says no. More than 14,000 food stamp recipients participated in a 9-county pilot program, but only 259 gained employment. On the other hand, 5,417 people were cut off.

But many state lawmakers say yes. A bill in the state Senate would require any able-bodied adult to complete 20 hours of work or volunteer service to receive food stamps.

"Plenty of families are doing everything they can to make ends meet, so we all need to do our part," says state Senator Ed Gaunch in a Daily Mail op-ed, "whether that is through part-time work, work training or volunteerism in all our counties."

We go in-depth on hunger, poverty and the food stamp program, on this week's Front Porch podcast.

Also, we discuss Gov. Justice's decision to light to lantern in the Capitol dome. He says it is to signify the potential health crisis a GOP proposed state budget would create. Wilson likes it, and Front Porch host Laurie Lin says it is a distraction and a stunt.

Support for The Front Porch comes from the Charleston Gazette-Mail with its two editorial pages – one liberal, one conservative – kinda like the Front Porch! Find out how to subscribe: http://www.wvgazettemail.com/

The Front Porch is the weekly podcast where we tackle the toughest issues facing Appalachia…in the same way you talk with friends on your front porch.

Subscribe to "The Front Porch" podcast on iTunes or however you listen to podcasts.

An edited version of “The Front Porch” airs Fridays at 4:50 p.m. on West Virginia Public Broadcasting’s radio network, and the full version is available above.

Share your opinions with us about these issues, and let us know what you'd like us to discuss in the future. Send a tweet to @radiofinn or @wvpublicnews, or e-mail Scott at sfinn @ wvpublic.org 

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