The county where most people use food stamps in every state – 24/7 Wall St.
In June, California announced that it send checks for $1,050 to approximately 23 million residents to combat the devastating effects of inflation on state residents. Even if other US states were to follow suit and issue their own so-called inflation relief checks, the checks alone would likely not be enough for families in need. A long-standing program that millions of Americans rely on is government food assistance, the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program.
In 2020, approximately 13.8 million U.S. households received SNAP benefits, formerly called food stamps. To find the county with the highest SNAP recipient rate in each state, 24/7 Wall St. looked at five-year estimates of the share of households that received SNAP benefits in the 12 months prior to the survey. from the US Census Bureau’s 2020 American Community. Investigation.
In 2020, 11.4% of U.S. households received SNAP benefits. In every state except Wyoming, there is a county or equivalent county where a higher proportion of households received nutritional assistance. Among the counties or county equivalents in each state with the highest SNAP recipient rate, this figure ranges from 9.2% to 55.0%.
Although factors such as assets and household composition affect a household’s eligibility for the benefit, benefit from the SNAP program is primarily determined by income. About two-thirds of the counties with the highest SNAP recipient rate in each state also have poverty rates that rank among the top three in their respective states. Oglala Lakota County, South Dakota, has a SNAP recipient rate of 55.0% and a poverty rate of 44.8%, respectively the highest and third highest rates in the nation . These are the states where the most children live in poverty.
Since income is the primary determinant of SNAP eligibility, unemployment is strongly tied to the number of people receiving benefits, as unemployed workers are likely to have little or no income. Just over half of the counties with the highest SNAP recipient rate in their state also have the highest or second highest five-year unemployment rate in their state. These are the states that are experiencing the worst spikes in unemployment since the start of the pandemic.
Click here to see the county with the highest SNAP receiving rate in each state
Click here to read our detailed methodology