3 Compelling Stories from Home & Away
By Emily Maxwell
ALASKA – from adn.com
Dunleavy administration seeks to tighten work requirements for some food stamp recipients
Gov. Mike Dunleavy’s administration is seeking to tighten rules about how much some low-income adults who receive federal food assistance in Alaska must work in order to receive such benefits, a spokesman for the governor said.
The change would implement a set of federal work requirements for recipients of Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program benefits, also called food stamps, in a state that has long had a waiver from those rules.
The administration wants to make the change in order “to comply with the spirit and intent” of federal rules, said Dunleavy spokesman Matt Shuckerow.
“SNAP is a program that is a safety net for people in their time of need, but also is a program that is clearly about encouraging participation in the workforce and self-sufficiency,” he said.
The move has raised concern from the Food Bank of Alaska, which said the change will further impact food insecurity at a time when assistance services are already strained in the wake of Dunleavy’s recent vetoes to the state’s budget.
NATIONAL – from usnews.com
Walmart to Remove Violent Game Displays but Continue Sales of Games, Guns
WALMART IS REMOVING signs and displays depicting violent video game scenes in the wake of two mass shootings last weekend, but the retail giant says it will continue selling the video games themselves and is resisting pressure to remove firearms from its shelves.
The move comes after a gunman on Saturday opened fire in a Walmart store in El Paso, Texas, killing 22 people. Just hours later, another man fatally shot nine people in a rampage in Dayton, Ohio.
The retailer told employees to remove marketing materials, turn off game systems that show violent games and to shut down monitors in electronics departments that show images of violence. Workers were also instructed to turn off hunting videos in sporting good departments, according to the Associated Press.
“We’ve taken this action out of respect for the incidents of the past week, and it does not reflect a long-term change in our video game assortment.,” Tara House, a corporate spokesperson, said in a statement. “We are focused on assisting our associates and their families, as well as supporting the community, as we continue a thoughtful and thorough review of our policies.”
INTERNATIONAL – from reuters.com
Hong Kong police demonstrate water cannon in warning to protesters
Hong Kong police put on a demonstration of an anti-riot water cannon on Monday, in a warning to protesters as authorities toughen their approach over violence that has roiled the Asian financial hub for two months.
This summer’s increasingly violent demonstrations have plunged the Chinese-ruled territory into its most serious crisis in decades, presenting one of the biggest popular challenges to Chinese leader Xi Jinping since he came to power in 2012.
Police have never used the cannon since two were bought in the wake of pro-democracy protests in 2014, but Monday’s demonstration used one to blast at dummy targets at a training facility as tactics on both sides harden and shift.
The police were condemned for heavy-handedness at a news conference by three individuals who said they represented the protesters and reiterated a demand for an independent panel to investigate incidents of excessive force.