More Americans Turning To Food Stamps

Alyn Luna has been struggling to give her family a better life. But after losing her job as a security guard three weeks ago, she did something Monday she hoped she'd never have to do again - apply for food stamps, reports CBS News correspondent Bill Whitaker.

"If it wasn't for this program, it would be really bad for me right now," Luna says.

With jobs declining and prices for basics -- food, fuel and medicine -- on the rise, more Americans are expected to turn to food stamps in the next year than at any time since the program began in the 1960s.

Already, demand is up in 43 states. Fourteen have hit record highs. In Michigan, one in every eight residents is on food stamps; one in seven in Kentucky.

"Their wages are going down or staying the same while the costs that they have to meet each month are going up, and the squeeze on them is so significant that they can't afford food," says Stacy Dean of the Center on Budget and Policy Priorities.

Anyone, working or retired, living near the poverty line -- less than about $28,000 per family of four -- is eligible for the benefits, about $100 per person per month.

But even with two jobs and food stamps, Shreel Jackson still is stretching beans and her budget to feed her four boys and granddaughter.

"Because what I get, it helps, but it's not enough, it's not enough, it's not enough," Jackson says.

With Congress fighting over funding, millions like Jackson won't find much more in the pot.
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