PNS Daily Newscast - March 27, 2020 

The U.S. now has more confirmed coronavirus cases than any other country. Despite the pandemic, Election 2020 continues and states are making changes.

2020Talks - March 27, 2020 

3.3 million people reported being jobless last week, according to new Labor Department numbers. And Puerto Rico was supposed to hold primaries this weekend, though they pushed it back to late April, because of COVID-19.

Food Stamps Turn 30, but Thousands of New Mexicans Still Hungry

May 21, 2007

One-in-six New Mexicans doesn't know where the next meal is coming from, but thousands of them could be getting help. The modern Food Stamp Program turns 30 years old this week, and Laurel Wyckoff with the New Mexico Association of Food Banks says over 40 percent of eligible families aren't signed up.

“People are afraid sometimes to go to a government office for assistance. Sometimes they don't want their neighbors or friends to know that they need help.”

Another problem is the large amount of paperwork needed to sign up. Wyckoff adds that long drives to government offices are also a barrier for people in rural areas.

Many seniors living on social security are only eligible to receive 10 dollars a month in food stamps. Wyckoff notes that limit hasn't changed since 1979.

“I don't know about you, but I don't think I could buy very much food for a month for 10 dollars. So, I think that needs to be fixed for sure.”

In New Mexico, the state matches that $10 for seniors, but Wyckoff believes the problem needs to be fixed at the federal level. The Food Stamp Program is tucked into the federal farm bill, which is up for reauthorization this year. A separate bill before Congress would add four billion dollars to the program.

Eric Mack, Public News Service - NM