In a move that will knock hundreds of thousands of people off the federal food stamp rolls, the Trump administration on Wednesday formally tightened work requirements for the program that helps feed more than 36 million Americans.

Eligibility for food stamps, known as Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program, or SNAP, is based on a formula that takes into consideration family size, citizenship status, household income and certain expenses. It can apply to individuals as well as families.

The new rule, which was finalized by the U.S. Department of Agriculture, restricts states from exempting certain “work-eligible adults” without dependents from the steady employment requirement in order to receive SNAP benefits.

The change, which takes effect on April 1, 2020, does not apply to children and their parents, those over 50  (including the elderly), those with a disability or pregnant women.

When the rule change was first proposed in February, the USDA estimated that as many as 750,000 people  would be dropped from the program. It revised that figure on Wednesday to 688,000.



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