Fed Up With Food Allergies?

The House’s food stamps cuts aren’t just cruel. They’re dumb.

The two states will require healthy adults through the age of 49 with no dependents to work at least 20 hours per week, or be in job training, in order to be eligible for food stamps. The change takes effect on Tuesday, when those states allow a federal waiver of the work requirement to expire. Wisconsin will take a similar step next July, bringing to eight the number of states requiring work to get the assistance. “These are people who should be working,” said Theresa Freed, spokeswoman for the Kansas Department for Children and Families. “There are plenty of jobs available.” A near-record 48 million Americans – or about one in seven – receive food stamps, government data shows. The Food Stamp Program administered by the U.S. Agriculture Department provides paper coupons or debit cards for low-income people to buy food. But states can ask for the work requirement to be added, which Oklahoma and Kansas have done. Phyllis Gilmore, Secretary of the Kansas Department for Children and Families, announced the work requirement in early September. In Oklahoma, a bill approved by state lawmakers earlier this year made the change. Both of those two states, as well as Wisconsin, have a Republican governor and Republican-controlled legislature. Oklahoma House Speaker T.W. Shannon said the work requirement would help food stamp recipients to “break their addiction to government subsidies.” The change will affect about 20,000 Kansas residents, state officials said.

Food franchisees face low pay, long hours

A link has been sent to your friend’s email address. Join the Nation’s Conversation To find out more about Facebook commenting please read the Conversation Guidelines and FAQs This story is part of the series health Fed up with food allergies? USA TODAY 2:27 a.m. EDT September 30, 2013 Take firm action with these tips on eating away from home. Fed up with food allergies? Follow these tips when eating away from home. (Photo: David Baratz/USA WEEKEND) SHARECONNECT TWEET COMMENTEMAILMORE If you have food allergies, you know eating even a bit of your trigger food can cause a reaction, from mild (hives, itchy mouth) to severe (trouble swallowing, shortness of breath, even loss of consciousness). The only prevention: Avoid the trigger food. And that’s easier said than done. In one of the latest efforts to manage food allergies, UCLA researchers created a portable device still in prototype stage that attaches to your smartphoneand analyzes food right on the spot for allergens. Until that’s in the real world, here are some tips on avoiding allergens when you or loved ones are away from home: Dining out: Talk to everyone and ask a lot of questions. Your server, the chef and even the restaurant manager should know about your food allergy.

As Washington debates, some U.S. states proceed with food stamps cuts

While starting any type of franchise may be easier than launching an independent small business, franchising is not really an easy path to success, Stites said. Key mistakes to avoid The surveys finding that satisfaction is lower among food franchisees than other types of franchisees is not unusual, Stites said. The food sector is a little bit more complicated a business to run, he said, noting that its often very employee heavy, plus entails dealing with fluctuating food prices, the potential for food spoilage and other challenges. On top of that, youve got probably some of the slimmest profit margins of any business, he said. Franchisees without prior restaurant experience may be in for a rude awakening. In the food business, typically people are working 50, 60 hours a week. Theyre managing lots of teenagers or a first-entry-level-job type of employee, Stites said. If youve come out of the corporate world, maybe you had an executive assistant, maybe you had a team of people to help you do projects, you buy a food franchisechances are youre not going to do well. Satisfaction varies by company Another driver of satisfaction, or lack thereof: How the franchiser treats its franchisees. There are companies that are transparent and have a very inclusive culture, Stites said. They see their franchisees as partners. Those companies tend to have much higher satisfaction than the companies that dont have an inclusive culture and basically say, Listen to what we say. Do this. That transparency includes financial information, he said. The best franchise systems will share financial information across their system so you know if Bob Smith in Salt Lake City has got a 28% cost of goods sold and yours is running at 34%, youre going to call Bob and ask, What are you doing to get that number? Stites said.

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(AFP/Getty Images) A second problem is that its a pure cutoff. If you have $1,999 dollars, you are fine. If you have $2,001 dollars, you are cut off. So you get stories about people surprised by a bit of good luck who are suddenly tossed from the program. These steep cliffs are a terrible way to design policy, especially when we want poor people to be saving money. 3. And the phaseout starts pretty low SNAP cuts would hit about 2.8 million families. (Michael S. Williamson / The Washington Post) Lets also remember how low this cutoff is, which is the third problem. Take a family living in poverty, earning $12,000 a year. A financial planner would say that you should have enough liquid savings to survive three to six months. That is going to be incredibly hard for this family; the definition of poverty we should think of is someone having to choose between essentials, meaning theres no money left over.