The U.S. Department of Agriculture’s Supplemental Nutritional Assessment Program (SNAP) provides nutritional assistance to millions of people nationwide. In order to be eligible for SNAP benefits in the State of Michigan, the Department of Human Services examines an individual’s or family’s income, shelter expenses, medical expenses and assets.
In this post, we will examine the percent of residents in each municipality in southeast Michigan who received SNAP benefits in 2012.
There were 100 municipalities, out of 191, in the region where 8 percent of residents or less collected SNAP benefits in 2012. There were, however, eight municipalities where 32 percent or more of the population collected SNAP benefits.
According to the American Community Survey, in 2012, 48.1 percent of Highland Park residents, 44.4 percent of Hamtramck residents, 38.8 percent of Inkster residents, 37.7 percent of Detroit residents, 34.7 percent of River Rouge residents, and 33.7 percent of Ecorse residents collected SNAP benefits.
The other municipalities where more than 32 percent or more of the population collected SNAP benefits in 2012 were Pontiac and Rose Township, both in Oakland County. In Pontiac, 34.8 percent of the residents collected these benefits and in Rose Township 39.2 percent collected them.
The inner-ring suburbs of Detroit, such as Warren (25%) and the city of Dearborn (18.1%), had a higher percentage of residents collecting SNAP benefits in 2012 than outer-ring suburbs, like Royal Oak (5.5%) and Livonia (4.8%). The two municipalities throughout the region with the lowest percentage of residents collecting SNAP benefits were Webstertown in Washtenaw County and Grosse Pointe Farms in Wayne County; each had .7 percent of residents collecting such benefits.
As noted, one’s eligibility for SNAP benefits is partially based on income. In November of 2013, Drawing Detroit, published a post on median income for the region using data from 2009 and 2011. In 2009, the median income for Hamtramck was about $30,000 and the median income in Detroit was $33,754. In Oakland County though there were 11 communities where the average median income was above $100,000. An example is below, showing the 11 communities in Oakland County where the average household income is above $100,000 and the percentage of residents that collected SNAP benefits. Given this, it appears income is actually a larger factor when being considered for SNAP benefits.