I am on Food Stamps and Medicaid. Yesterday was my six month Food Stamp Appraisal Workshop with a lot of other people. It appears that now if you are on Food Stamps, my state requires all SNAP recipients get a job for 20 hours a week and 15 hours of volunteer work a month for a neighbor who is not a relative. Failure to comply, even if you are like myself who has no job skills and does not drive, earns 1 month of no Food Stamps for the first offense, 3 months of no food stamps for the second offense and 6 months of no Food Stamps for the third month or until they are terminated, whichever comes first.
Now I have not worked since May 2005. I have tried applying for jobs but they require reliable transportation which I do not have. I never leave the house, except once a month to get groceries. Very rarely, once every few months, do I go to my bank and pull out some money to watch a movie I have been waiting to see. But now I am forced to try to find a job even though I do not have have a car, do not drive as I don’t even have a license, and have not worked since I was eighteen in order to keep receiving food stamps.
I live in the country with a twenty-five minute drive to town. We do not have taxis, buses or even sidewalks by which to walk to town even though it would take you an hour to walk to town. There are no little to no jobs here in my town. A few places are going out of business and there are some empty stores that are for lease or for sale in the downtown area. The county I live in does not help you with getting a car, finding employment or job training. You are apparently expected to do such things for yourself and they do not care if you have no job skills at all. I was told, well everyone was told this, to go out and get a job or you will no longer receive food stamps.
I do not have any hand-eye coordination or the fine motor skills of normal people because I was a premature birth. I cannot walk in a straight line and have been told I walk like a duck as I am flat-footed. I have had problems in some way or another since birth thanks to my premature birth yet do not qualify for social security because I look like a physically able bodied adult although I have been in hospitalized twice for mental illness as a teenager. But of course this does not matter to the people of my county. They don’t care what your problems are and they won’t do anything to help you if you are unemployed. If you are employed they will help by getting you free uniforms for work.
Yes I know this is my fault for not working since I was eighteen. However I also know that nobody is going to hire you if you don’t have reliable transportation and haven’t been working a near decade. Once my appointment ended however, I went home with my grandmother who I live with. Most of the time I remain in my room, sometimes going out to watch television in the living room but I do not willingly go out of the house. I haven’t been given a definitive diagnosis but have been given a slew of mental illnesses. Upon coming home I called some place and went back into town to get a packet to fill out so I can get mental health evaluation as I have not had one since I was fifteen. I filled out the application with the help of my grandmother and turned it back in, also setting up a dentist appointment as that is a month overdue. Then I went back into town to drop off the application and set up a mental health evaluation for December 14th while my dentist appointment is December 9th.