PLEDGE NOW
Food Stamps and American Hunger
Food stamp recipient Lisa Zilligen, 28, serves lunch to her three children -- Miles, 20 months, Olivia, 6, and Danielle, 8 -- in her home in Chicago, Nov. 23, 2009. (AP)

Food stamp recipient Lisa Zilligen, 28, serves lunch to her three children -- Miles, 20 months, Olivia, 6, and Danielle, 8 -- in her home in Chicago, Nov. 23, 2009. (AP)

One in eight Americans now gets food stamps. One in eight. Among American children, one of every four.

Food stamp use surged under President George W. Bush. In the economic crisis of the past year, it has exploded. All over the country. In communities where people thought they would never be on food stamps — but now are.

The longterm poor and the newly jobless, city and suburb — 36 million people.

What does it mean for our country? What does it say about our economy?

This hour, On Point: America’s exploding dependence on food stamps, and what it tells us.

You can join the conversation. Tell us what you think — here on this page, on Twitter, and on Facebook.

Guests:

Joining us from Washington is Jason DeParle, reporter for The New York Times. He has written extensively about poverty and food insecurity in the U.S., most recently in last Sunday’s front-page story, “Food Stamp Use Soars, and Stigma Fades.”

Also from Washington we’re joined by Tom Vilsack, U.S. Secretary of Agriculture and former Governor of Iowa.

Joining us in our studio is Tiziana Dearing, president of Catholic Charities of the Archdiocese of Boston.

Mike Joseph joins us from Peoria, Illinois. He is the Produce Merchandising Rep. for Kroger Supermarkets in the Peoria area.

David Young joins us from Mason, Ohio. He is President of the Board of Commissioners of Warren County and a small business owner. He recently appealed to the state government to strengthen the eligibility requirements to make sure people don’t abuse the food stamp program.

Please follow our community rules when engaging in comment discussion on this site.
ONPOINT
TODAY
Aug 28, 2015
WDBJ-TV7 meteorologist Leo Hirsbrunner, right, wipes his eyes during the early morning newscast as anchors Kimberly McBroom, center, and guest anchor Steve Grant deliver the news at the station in Roanoke, Va., Thursday, Aug. 27, 2015. Reporter Alison Parker and cameraman Adam Ward were killed during a live broadcast Wednesday, while on assignment in Moneta. (AP Photo/Steve Helber)

A deadly shooting on live TV. Wall Street’s roller coaster ride. Biden considers a White House bid. 10 years since Katrina.

Aug 28, 2015
Lightning first ignited the Meadow fire on July 20, 2014 in Yosemite. By September 8, the fire had charred 2,582 acres. Bernie Krause has recorded soundscapes of national parks destroyed by large areas of forest fires. Listen below.  (National Park Service)

A legendary natural sound collector shares his recordings. We’ll listen in.

RECENT
SHOWS
Aug 28, 2015
Lightning first ignited the Meadow fire on July 20, 2014 in Yosemite. By September 8, the fire had charred 2,582 acres. Bernie Krause has recorded soundscapes of national parks destroyed by large areas of forest fires. Listen below.  (National Park Service)

A legendary natural sound collector shares his recordings. We’ll listen in.

 
Aug 28, 2015
WDBJ-TV7 meteorologist Leo Hirsbrunner, right, wipes his eyes during the early morning newscast as anchors Kimberly McBroom, center, and guest anchor Steve Grant deliver the news at the station in Roanoke, Va., Thursday, Aug. 27, 2015. Reporter Alison Parker and cameraman Adam Ward were killed during a live broadcast Wednesday, while on assignment in Moneta. (AP Photo/Steve Helber)

A deadly shooting on live TV. Wall Street’s roller coaster ride. Biden considers a White House bid. 10 years since Katrina.

On Point Blog
On Point Blog
Our Week In The Web: August 28, 2015
Friday, Aug 28, 2015

You say #hashtag, we say, #forwhat? That, plus Usain Bolt and the ominous lurking Segway cameraman. Friday!

More »
Comment
 
Our Week In The Web: August 21, 2015
Friday, Aug 21, 2015

Do you even click? (And other reflections on link sharing and web commenting).

More »
6 Comments
 
Do You Recognize Amazon’s Workplace Culture? Tell Us!
Tuesday, Aug 18, 2015

Do you recognize the workplace conditions described in a recent New York Times piece on Amazon? We want to hear from you!

More »
5 Comments