This report – the latest in an annual series – presents estimates of the percentage of eligible persons, by state, who participated in the Food Stamp Program (FSP) during an average month in fiscal year 2006 and in each of the 2 previous fiscal years. This report also presents estimates of state participation rates for eligible “working poor” individuals (persons in households with earnings) over the same period.
Although the FSP provides an important support for working families, the working poor have participated at rates that are substantially below those for all eligible persons. The addition of state-by-state information on participation among the working poor enables a comparison of these rates to the overall participation rates. Nationally, the participation rate among all eligible persons was 67 percent in fiscal year 2006. The participation rate for eligible working poor individuals was 57 percent, a significant difference of 10 percentage points.