Food Stamped With A Stigma Badge

, , , , , | Working | March 21, 2018

(I have recently applied for an EBT card, aka food stamps. While we are not nearly as bad off as some people, and I do work full-time, my significant other has been out of a job, and money has been extremely tight. I complete all my interviews, and I am told to drop off a signed letter describing my income to the local Assistance Office. I start off by talking to the front receptionist.)

Me: “Hi! My name is [My Name], and I was told to drop off this signed letter pertaining to my case.”

Receptionist: “It’ll be a four- to five-hour wait before you can speak with a case worker. Have a seat and wait for your name to be called.”

Me: “Well, I really don’t want to wait that long, and I don’t really need to speak to a worker; I just need to drop this letter off.”

Receptionist: “It will take twice as long to process that if you don’t speak with a worker today.”

Me: “That’s fine; I was prepared to wait before getting my card.”

Receptionist: *looking me up and down* “If you can afford to wait an extra three days, then clearly, you don’t need assistance. Why are you even bothering to be here? You’re wasting everyone’s time!”

Me: *not wanting to explain my whole situation to this lady* “Look: can’t you just process this paper? I’ve already had all my interviews. I’m sorry I don’t have an envelope.”

Receptionist: *snatching the letter from my hand* “If you can afford food for the week, you can afford an envelope. No wonder people like you can’t get good jobs; you don’t even know how to be professional.” *to the line behind me* “Next!”

Me: *pause* “Have a nice day.”

(I just don’t understand how people whose job is to help those less fortunate can be so rude!)

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