Now, for a disabled family, you can get FAP cash benefits, which is the same as FANF but with no time limit. You can only receive that if your income (for a family of 5) is under $700 a month. The disabled person can receive APTD (aide to the permanently and totally disabled) which is $18/month. Then the kids get Healthy Kids Gold insurance and the disabled adult gets Medicaid, on top of the Medicare they get from SSDI. If you get SSI, you don't get Medicare or APTD. You get food stamps also, which for a family of five with an income of $729/month is $600/month.
What is the difference between SSI and SSDI? SSI is supplemental security income, you never have had to work to receive it, you may not work while getting it. It's pretty much FANF for adults, but with no time limits.
SSDI is social security disability income. You have had to have worked at least 40 quarters and paid in to social security to receive it. You can work while on it, making up to $999/month without losing any of your SSDI money. You go through quite a bit of testing to be qualified for it because they want to truly make sure you are 100% disabled.
Public Housing: well, your rent is 30% of your gross income, with deductions for trash bags (in my city we have to buy city bags and use only those). To get in they do a complete background check, finger printing you and everything. You are only allowed to have one vehicle here, must have a housing authority parking permit sticker on it. If you don't have a driveway (only two apartments do), you can park on the street or in the public parking lot in the center. They don't really monitor it though, only making sure the cars in the driveways have parking permit stickers.
Your tax dollars: In 2012, the average American taxpayer making $50,000 per year paid just $36 towards the food stamps program.That's just ten cents a day! That's less than the cost of a gumball. They cut the budget for food stamps so you are actually paying less now.
I am a 100% disable mom of 3. I became disabled in March of 2010. I see a therapist, a psychiatrist and a functional support therapist each week. I will always be disabled. That will never change. My boyfriend, who is not my children's father, lives with us. Legally. He is on my lease. He had an amazing factory job, but was temporarily laid off. He walks to Labor Ready EVERY singly morning hoping to be sent out. He goes back to work full time on 3/18. We have a plan, we have goals. He is going to get his CDL this fall and get a job driving trucks. By the end of 2015 we plan to be out of public housing, get a home loan, and have our own home. We (me and the kids only, he's currently uninsured) will still receive state insurance and I will still be disabled and getting SSDI. Change doesn't happen overnight. You have to work at it. And my boyfriend wants to make sure that we have all that. We report everything. I'm honest. I don't want to get more assistance than I need. I don't want to be on food stamps and in public housing forever. But I know that the best things take time to achieve. I'll get there someday.
So, with that all said, why is it looked down on so? Why do people think that if you receive any assistance you should dress in potato sacks, have unkempt hair, not have nice nails and picture perfect make up, you can't have a nice cell phone, a car (a used side of the road bought car at that!) or anything.
Now, I know the system is flawed and people are able to get more than they need, but for the honest people, why shame them and make them feel like the lowest form of citizen? Is getting a little help that bad?
I know this conversation will spark controversy, and potentially bring out the worse in some people. Please remember that we are all adults, capable of a civil and adult conversation. Free of drama. Thank you :)