CEO of Large Food Bank On EBT Cuts: “Riots Always Begin Typically The Same Way”



What happens when the government dependent wake up and realize that they are not getting their food stamps? Well we will soon find out as $5 billion has been stripped in the program in retaliation for the government mistake in October. One CEO of the largest food bank in New York is taking a stand. She says, “riots always begin typically the same way”.

The food programs have become a big part of our society. With over half the work force out of work, many rely on the program to provide food for their family. Food banks and food kitchens are receiving an abnormally high amount of traffic.  It is looking as if many in America may not be able to provide food for their families.

One of the largest food pantries in New York does not disagree. She says that the $5 billion in cuts aimed at a “problem’ that started with the glitches in the EBT system during the shut down may cause more than just people to go hungry. She states that survival instincts may kick in and cause people to riot.

I can not disagree with her. When people are hungry or protecting their family a principle called fight or flee works just the same way as when a person is threatened. If indeed the cuts take food off the table of children, parents will fight back. While we agree that the system needs looked at, the cutting off of the food for those that are legitimately on the system may cause mass panic.

Here is what she says from Salon Magazine’

Food stamp recipients face a massive benefit cut set to kick in when stimulus funds expire Friday. The nationwide cut “is equivalent to about 16 meals a month for a family of three,” according to a Center on Budget and Policy Priorities analysis using the USDA’s “Thrifty Food Plan.” CBPP called the roughly $5 billion annual cut to the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program “unprecedented” in “depth and breadth.”

“If you look across the world, riots always begin typically the same way: when people cannot afford to eat food,” Margarette Purvis, the president and CEO of the Food Bank for New York City, told Salon Monday. Purvis said that the looming cut would mean about 76 million meals “that will no longer be on the plates of the poorest families” in NYC alone – a figure that outstrips the total number of meals distributed each year by the Food Bank for New York City, the largest food bank in the country. “There will be an immediate impact,” she said.

“The fact that they’re going to lose what’s basically an entire week’s worth food” each month, said Purvis, “it’s pretty daunting.” She told Salon that while policymakers “are attempting to punish people for being poor,” and “people are comforted by believing that they know that a person has to have done something wrong in order to be poor,” in reality, “I can tell you that more and more folks have more than one job and are still needing help.” (As I reported last week, audio recorded by a McDonald’s worker-activist showed a counselor on an employee hotline encouraging her to sign up for food stamps because it “takes a lot of the pressure off how much money you spend on groceries.”) Purvis added that cutting food stamps was “not even good business sense,” because each dollar of food stamps infuses over $1.70 of spending into the economy.

“We were all told that these cuts for November 1 would not happen,” said Purvis. When “they decided they were going to take from some of the increases to food stamps” to fund First Lady Michelle Obama’s “Let’s Move” program, she told Salon, “We were told, you know, by the president…these cuts will not happen, we won’t get rid of the program. Well guess what? November 1 is around the corner, and no one has restored that money.”

Some prominent conservatives have questioned the significance of public assistance cuts for the poor. Weekly Standard Editor Bill Kistol contended during the government shutdown that “it’s not going to be the end of the world, honestly, even if you’re on nutritional assistance from the federal government. The state of Arkansas can help out, localities can help out, churches can help out, I believe no one is going to starve in Arkansas because of the shutdown.” Asked about such claims, Purvis said that citing the efforts of groups like hers as a reason not to worry about public assistance cuts was “one of the most ill-informed arguments on the planet.” She told Salon, “the first line of defense against hunger is a food stamp.” While some “have had this way of romanticizing charity,” she said, “charity is also a system that is based on capacity and resources.” Purvis added that politicians “didn’t make any additional resources available to these magical charities that they expect to step in for this devastation that’s geared at the poorest of Americans.”

Purvis said she and her colleagues are “begging” Congress to pass legislation by December to restore the expired funds. Rather than “trying to raise a dollar” to avert disaster privately, she said, a solution will require Americans to “raise their voices,” because “the avenue has to be activism.” In the meantime, she predicted “a very tough Thanksgiving.”~SM


  • rich1103

    When government spends billions in other country and not take care of our own there is definitely a major problem. This may be the thing that will get Americans to take government back from the millionaires and crooked politicians.

  • Michael Santarella

    Ya Betta Believe it

  • Fritz Johson

    Billions to israel every year, yet all citizens there get free medical, economy is strong, the streets are lined with the finest shops, grocery stores stocked to the brim with food.

  • Marilyn Kopecky

    Billions to Palestine people, which their still poor….

  • Uncle Roy

    How is approx. $36 a month, a week of food? that’s $9 a week… Give me a break. There are hundred of jobs in this city BUT I’ve been told it pays more to get benefits than to work 40 hours and lose benefits! Got to love those lying, thieving politians who know how to buy votes!

  • Steven

    Israel is the only democracy in the M.E. – and Arab Muslims are in their parliament – name an Arab Muslim country where a Jew can be in their parliament?

  • Steven

    Exactly – they KEEP their people poor, angry, and raise their kids to be murderous thugs. With all the aid they get, they should have tons of infrastructure and industry. Their leaders loot the money and keep the folks oppressed and angry at …… Israel.
    And on a side note – no matter what Israel does, it comes down to who is the first born of Abraham – Isaac or Ishmael. If Israel exists, then Mohammed was lying.

  • Dreadscale

    Actually they Just jury mander and dont worry:)

  • Desiree Seifert

    so glad I have ALWAYS worked for what I have….When you rely on the government you’re doing nothing but screwing you’re self!! IF you’re disabled or elderly that’s another story, but to many today have made public assistance a career and way of life and want and expect everything to be handed to them on a sliver platter!!!

  • Kevin Doty

    yep more is yet to come you people will eventually not have a choice but to fight to restore this republic or die!

  • Kevin Doty

    the food system is going to be the back breaker of it all and may start it pop it off. faster the better. lets get this nation restored hang the traitors,tyrants and more… water the tree of liberty. bring it on!

  • The Lord’s Warrior

    You bicker about how much money goes to Israel yet you make no mention of the money sent to the Muslim brotherhood, an enemy of Israel and peace in the middle east., Read your Bible and discover the truth. Ignore it to your peril.

  • Ernesto Arceo

    Bring back jobs from overseas to USA and force people receiving welfare to work for government projects even if they are menial jobs to slowly bring back the ethics of work for those too dependent on the welfare system back to the American mainstream of life.where hard and serious work is valued.

  • mjaphotography

    the nationwide budget for a family of four before cuts is about 16 meals a month. geeze. with cuts. that leaves nothing for families. it was already a bad program as some families received enough money for food to feed an army while others received barely enough for a few meals a month. the sad part is that it seems those who have no money to pay for shelter, cooking gas and electric are given the most money for food. where in the world were they going to cook and store all that food was my question all along?? it didn’t make any sense at all! while those struggling and using all their funds to pay for shelter and paying their electric and gas bill had no money left for food, and since they had just enough to pay these bills, that was counted as income which in turn left those families or individuals out in the cold for meals or funds for food. they seemed to be most in need of food, while those given boatloads of food money were most in need of shelter and funds to pay for utilities before even considering what they would need for food assistance. what a screwed up system. they are simply cutting what never worked in the first place it seems to me. lets hope they piece it back together in a way that actually uses common sense in the future to properly help those in need….there will always be people in need. they do not want to be there in that situation. they have no choice and to be told there is no help is just wrong. people in need here that way too often. the systems are all broken. courts are postponing cases, to help the most dire court cases in priority, social security tossed files over the shutdown, and don’t tell me they wouldn’t do such a thing, I already know first hand they did! and they have budget cuts so deep across the country that they cannot even keep up with their own system!
    they are telling people they were all overpaid and withholding checks without even offering appeals or waivers until after they keep social security checks leaving people out in the cold for shelter, food, and utilites. these are people who rely on social security checks. it is happening and no one can control the spiraling effect of damages to US citizens of all the budget cuts that are hurting US Citizens, while the immigrants here illegally are?… doing what? receiving drivers licenses in Illinois for one…and being allowed to vote. and who knows what else besides getting tax breaks for being noncitizens.

  • MoveOnGet OverIt

    CEO & President of the one of the largest food banks in NY? I wonder what her salary is. So many making money off the poor.

  • Mark Langlois

    When I was a kid, we had to “tighten our belts” and buy cheaper food when times were tough. When they say “one weeks worth of food”, what they mean is one weeks worth of food at the food stamp rate per month. NOT one weeks worth of cheaper food. My family has survived on beans and rice and food grown in the family garden. Pretty much everybody else can do the same if they try.
    This is America. Even the least fed in our country is fat by the world’s standards.

  • Sue Ann Carey

    If we would just stop sending money over to country’s who “HATE” us and spend it on our own people we would have plenty of dollars to help the needy. Our present government is encouraging illegals to enter our country when we DO NOT have enough money to feed our own people! This is ridiculous! Mis-management of our tax dollars and the trust of those who pay taxes. You cannot keep raising taxes on those who work in order to pay for the governments poor decision making. Pretty soon there will be fewer tax payers, than what will the government do? heh?!

  • Brandon Bowers

    Rice, various beans, salt pork and spices are pretty cheap and that will feed a family for a week on less than 50 bucks. If you cant make ends meet, you can live quite cheaply on those items. Don’t expect to buy everything you did when times were good. In the meantime the Fed is still printing $85 billion a month for the corporate welfare. Cut that as well.

  • Sue Ann Carey

    This government lied to the people and said they would take care of the poor. Many, many people (especially blacks) voted for Obama because they had the impression that he would give them all they wanted or ever needed. This has not happened! Another lie, People….wake up America! This particular party has always lied to get votes and pointed the finger in the other direction. People bought into that lie and thus, here we are and a big mess because of the lies so many believed! I would hope America is waking up everyday to the fact that they have been duped and they will not take it anymore!

  • Debra

    Really people? Gah, instead of junk food, drinks at the convenience store, etc. how about ya’ll get some staples that can stretch. Flour, beans, rice, potatoes, ground beef, vegetables. If you have flour, water, and salt you can make biscuits. You won’t be the healthiest people in the world but you won’t starve by any stretch of the imagination. Plan out meals instead of going to the store “oh that looks good” and putting it in the buggy. Get exactly what you need, plant a garden to supplement. You don’t have to have lots of room for a garden, look up a foot by foot garden. Have room for a stack of tires in your yard? You can plant potatoes. You can do a heck of a lot with potatoes if you have the gumption. Grow extra, barter with neighbors if you want something else to eat. Stop depending on the system!!

  • Jim

    This is due to obama takeing billions out of the food stam program and giving it to his dude looks like a lady wife for her help a fat kid out program.

  • Jim

    They also know that billions are going to mexico for tax returns from the illegals or those that are working towards of becoming a legal person, in a news report they asked the government why they let all these Mexicans claim daddy , mommy brother cousin, and any other family member they want when that all live in mexico? The government said they know about but so what. I about fell over. But the American people eat sh##.

  • Kenyan Mocker

    Watch what people buy with their EBT cards. Much is not necessary or nutritious, such as flavored bottled water, snacks. Maybe rules of what can be purchased need to be tightened.

  • Dean Scholl

    why are we bitchin about the middle east…the problem is right here in the USA….the artical stated that half of America is outof work…does this mean that we have 50% unemploymentwhat happend to the 7%…it seems to me that the do nothing congresional cave dwellers would do something to stimulate the economy…but they refuse to do so…jobs need to be created..not more people dependant on food stamps….the administration has had numorous oppertunity for job growth…but with every sector of the economy he has set in place discouragement factors….this problem can only be traced back to obama and harry ried….not the middle east….

  • Dean Scholl

    bullshit…they voted for him because he is black

  • mike

    I have worked for 35 years ,putting into the system . I didn’t asked to get hurt three years ago . I lived on my personal saving ,supporting my wife and myself and our home. Now when I apply for assistance people still have the stigma of “you applied for food stamps, loser” not true for all of us.

  • Jimi Lee James

    Most of us would never say that in your case, but your case is exactly what the systems were set-up for…you my friend are no loser, you earned and deserve the help of the community. Only those who choose to manipulate and abuse the system when they are perfectly able to provide for themselves does the “loser” tag apply to.

  • Humanity4Humans

    and that’s precisely want the communists want.

  • Sherry Jones

    I don’t know that that’s exactly fair. I mean, yes, her salary may be higher than what it should be, but we don’t know that. We also don’t know how many hours a week she works, what her many responsibilities are, any of that. To say that anyone who makes a salary doing a job that helps the poor is “making money off the poor” is a little ridiculous. Should these people be expected to work for free and be unable to support themselves and their families? Getting paid to do a job is not “making money off the poor”.

  • John Gilbani

    When Arafat died, he was worth over $3 Billion.
    Good money after bad . . .

  • Rebecca

    This is all being done on purpose. The elites want food riots so they have an excuse to declare martial law. Once martial law is declared, it will never be lifted.
    Food stamps are a joke. Every time I see someone on food stamps they are morbidly obese. When I was in college I was so broke I only ate 2 meals per day, no snacks, and I drank nothing but water. It disgusts me to see poor people living up the good life eating steaks and lobster, and drinking a case of soda every day. I work really hard and I can’t afford to buy that stuff.

  • Mark Langlois

    To make biscuits you need baking soda too. Flour water and salt makes paste.

  • Mark Langlois

    OK, dude, chill.
    Children don’t have jobs, they are children (!) and are counted as part of the population of America. A lot of women don’t have jobs because they take care of their children.
    That means half the population is mostly men and women who have regular jobs. To have half the population working regular jobs is about right, and the 7% unemployment figures come out of that group because they are drawing unemployment benefits.

  • Debra

    Knew I was forgetting an ingredient, thanks. >.<

  • ImaginationRanch

    …and some sort of lard, shortening, butter, some such. Believe me. I make great biscuits, have made ‘em from scratch so long I could do it with my eyes closed.My family may wind up hating biscuits and beans, if it comes to it, but they won’t starve!

  • Fritz Johson

    How about IRAN? Maurice Motamed, Jewish member of the Iranian Parliament, twice elected. Siamak Moreh Sedgh is currently a jewish member of Iranian Parliament. There are about 30,000 jews living in Iran, you can visit packed synagogues in Tehran on Friday nights. They have been offered free money to move to israel but they don’t (Google this: “Iran’s Jews reject cash offer to move to Israel”).

    Why don’t you know this Steven? Ask yourself what kind of media we have in USA. Now re-read your stupid question above.

    Aside from that, israel has a phony “democracy” there is a small handful of guys in charge since the 1970s. How long has it been, 25 years now, we have Nettanyihu in charge off and on among his cohorts.

    Get a grip on reality.

  • Karen

    Yes, I got in line behind a lady that was arguing with the guy checking her out because her food stamps wouldn’t pay for her RedBull. Really, is RedBull a food item. I wanted to shake her.

  • Melissa A Vaughn

    thats what we are doing i dont get food stamps and cant afford all that exceex beans and rice will keep you alive if you get tired of beans and rice switch to rice and beans lol

  • Josh Irish

    thats a pretty dark crowd in that photo

  • Leslie

    Funds that were diverted to pay for Michelle’s let’s move campaign? Campaign and spend money sounds familiar. Hmmm… Everybody here enjoy their money being spent on THAT necessary program. Between evils I would have gone with the food stamps program.

  • Tin

    Riot and fight back or starve. Better yet, take a low paying job and work at trying to improve your situation. When the handouts end, and they will end, unless something drastic happens, you better have some skills, work experience, and a plan-B. If you are that concerned about your kids going hungry, maybe you better get your shit together now.

  • l.erry

    bam, you just shot his mind up with reality.

  • jaws7096

    What the gov’t gives, they can also take away! That’s why I would NEVER rely on them for anything!

  • Martin McDole

    The most sane comment so far Kevin. You’re right………this is simply the beginning. I’m not a doom and gloomer, but the writing is on the wall – all you have to do is read.

  • Meafunchic

    As a person that works in retail, I can assure you that there are those that are in dire need of the food programs, and then again, there are those…..anyway, I’ve seen so many food stamp recipients come through our checkouts purchasing, literally, nothing but junk with their food stamps. Little Debbie cakes, candy, soda pop. If the government wants to limit anything, they should start by disallowing junk food items for purchase with food stamps. As well, they should have every recipient drug-tested on an ongoing basis, every month, and limit the allowable time to be able to collect from the programs as they do for unemployment benefits. Make perfectly healthy individuals look for work, even if it means flipping burgers somewhere. I did it, many years ago, because I didnt want my kids growing up dependent upon government assistance. It wasn’t meant to become a way of life, period.

  • Meafunchic

    Actually, you can make indian frybread with just flour and water. Sprinkle a touch of sugar and cinnamon on top and its surprisingly delicious.

  • Debra

    oh goodness, that is just asinine and definitely a big part of what is wrong with the system!!

  • Debra

    look into a foot by foot garden, they’re really easy and great supplemental that isn’t expensive to do.

  • Debra


  • U.N. Soldier This is worse, and yet NO ONE is talking about it!