FGA Comments on New GAO Report on Food Stamp Fraud

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Washington, D.C. — Today, the U.S. Government Accountability Office (GAO) released a new report highlighting widespread food stamp fraud, including retailer trafficking of food stamp benefits.

According to the report, the Food and Nutrition Service (FNS) reports that $1 billion in food stamp benefits are trafficked annually, but the extent is uncertain and could be up to $4.7 billion.

The Foundation for Government Accountability (FGA) has been a vocal supporter of reforms that restore the integrity of welfare programs by eliminating fraud and preserving resources for the truly needy. FGA’s Stop the Scam initiative reduces fraud and abuse by conducting regular reviews to ensure eligibility for those receiving welfare benefits and removing those who abuse the system.

“Welfare fraud is one of the biggest untold stories of the last decade, robbing resources from the truly needy and eroding public trust in the integrity of our welfare programs. While the bad-actor food stamp retailers exposed in this GAO report are in part to blame, we must not lose sight of the accountability that falls upon the food stamp recipient willing to commit fraud and abuse the system,” said Sam Adolphsen, vice president of executive affairs at FGA.

“Too few states take these crimes seriously, and both states and the federal government can do more on this front. This is why FGA supports efforts like Stop the Scam to detect and stop welfare fraud and programs that move people off welfare and back to work.”

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The Foundation for Government Accountability is a non–profit, multi–state think tank that specializes in health care, welfare, and work reform. To learn more, visit TheFGA.org.