MISSOURI (KMOV.com) – Missouri Hunger Task Force Chairman Glenn Koenen says many people in Missouri are not receiving the food stamps they need because of problems with the system.
“Right now, we have the distinction going to the top of the wrong list,” Koenen said. “Missouri is making it too hard for families to get the help they are entitled to.” According to Koenen, 90,000 fewer Missourians are getting food stamps now than in 2013 and says they quit after Missouri changed the system.
“We have had interns go in and just take a look at the process,” said Gary Well of Operation Food Search. “People can be there for an hour or two just to ask a simple question about the food stamp application (process).”
Wells says he believes people stopped trying to apply after there were reports of paperwork getting lost and repeated requests for information already turned in.
“It’s going to be worse at the end of 2015,” Koenen said. “When all this is fully implemented because every step so far has made it harder for families to get benefits.” Koenen also suggests one way to fix the problem is having more workers. He says he saw one instance where one case worker had 1400 families to be responsible for.
Wells says food pantries are seeing more people 55 and older who have never been to a pantry before.