Over 5.8 million individuals have discontinued their participation in America’s food stamp program since President Donald Trump’s first full month in office, according to the latest U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) data.
The most recent USDA data shows that 5,829,890 people discontinued their participation in food stamps received through the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) since February 2017, Trump’s first full month in office.
Overall food stamp participation had consistently declined since 2013 back when the Obama administration was in power and enrollment in the program reached its peak in U.S. history.
After 2013, SNAP enrollment plummeted once state legislatures passed laws requiring food stamp recipients to work, attend school, volunteer, or participate in job training for a set number of hours per week to receive benefits.
Currently, there are 36,302,402 people enrolled in the nation’s food stamp program. But USDA officials say that number is “preliminary” due to the government shutdown at the end of 2018, which affected how food stamps were administered in early 2019.
The president has signaled that he wants to curb the nation’s dependency on food stamps and wants those coming into the country to be self-sufficient.
The president told Breitbart News in an Oval Office interview that he does not want any immigrants coming into the U.S. to be dependent on welfare programs.
“I don’t want to have anyone coming in that’s on welfare,” Trump told Breitbart News in March.
The USDA also announced in June that it would be putting policies into place that would restrict certain groups from obtaining SNAP benefits.
People who win the lottery, win a significant amount of money from gambling, or are convicted felons who do not comply with their sentences would be disqualified from receiving government assistance.
The agency also said that it would require a better “data verification system” to ensure that gamblers, convicted felons, and people in the country illegally be barred from receiving government assistance.