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New bill could force food stamp recipients to get a job

(IMG:WPMI) New bill could force food stamp recipients to get a job

People in Alabama who receive food stamps may soon be required to go to work in order to keep their government assistance.

U.S. House Republicans are proposing a bill that would require work and job training.

Manistee Hendrieth just started his job hunt. However, he says it's already a big task at hand.

"Finding a job is a job," he said.

Those who get food stamps may soon endure that same process.

Republicans are proposing a bill that would require able-bodied adults between the ages of 18 and 59 who don't have children 6 or under to work a minimum of 20 hours a week or be in a job training program.

"I don't think it's too much to ask those people to work in order to get their food stamps," Alabama Congressman Bradley Byrne said.

Byrne says he supports the bill and it applies to 200,000 people in Alabama.

"By the way, most of them are white males, so this isn't a racial thing at all," he said.

Byrne says the jobs are out there.

"I hear from employers all over my district who say they can't find workers, but we've got people on food stamps who don't have jobs and they should go out and get one of these jobs," he said.

Hendrieth says getting a job isn't a bad requirement, but the changes could cause more hardship on the person.

"It's a catch 22 situation," he said. "You have to report the income, and it'll decrease your benefits."

Which he says could leave some families hungry if the job doesn't pay enough.

Lawmakers are set to vote on the bill Friday.

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