Don’t leave rural workers out of the employment renaissance

| Work requirements

With its proposed food stamp work requirement rule, USDA has an opportunity to crack down on fraud and abuse while moving millions from welfare to work — but to fully leverage this opportunity, it needs to amend the proposed rule to make sure government treats rural areas fairly.

Under the proposed rule, states could use so-called “labor market areas” to determine whether a region has high-enough unemployment to qualify for a work requirement waiver, but this is problematic for multiple reasons.

The biggest? Labor market areas, by definition, isolate rural regions.