TV5 Investigates: Bridge Cards Sold On Craigslist 2-14-2011 - WNEM TV 5

TV5 Investigates: Bridge Cards Sold On Craigslist 2-14-2011

Bridge Cards are supposed to help those in need but some people are trying to profit off the state’s welfare system.
TV5's first I-team report showed how college students can take advantage of the food assistance program.
TV5’s Liz Gelardi also found other forms of abuse, like someone trying to sell a card on Craigslist.
Area grocery stores have also had problems with people selling cards. Alexandra Hernandez works as a cashier at Riverview Food Center. “It doesn’t surprise me anymore,” said Hernandez.


Just last week a person was trying to sell Bridge Cards in the parking lot, she said. Hernandez said people have also tried to sell the cards in the store.
“Don’t do it in front of me if you don’t want the wrong response from me, cause I’m not going to let them do it in front of me, especially when I know there’s people that really do need it.
The Department of Human Services recently announced a crackdown on college students who use Bridge Cards. TV5 wanted to know if the state has any other plans to target other forms of fraud.
“I can’t speak to any specific changes at this time,” said DHS Spokesperson Gisgie Davila Gendreau.
A DHS spokeswoman told TV5’s Liz Gelardi the state is working to make sure assistance goes to people who truly need it. She also said the department takes abuse and fraud claims seriously.
Some lawmakers have proposed adding a photo to Bridge Cards, making them harder to sell. DHS couldn’t comment on that idea but it’s a change Hernandez would like to see.
“I think it will make it a lot harder because they would have to be present with them and that’s the thing; they don’t want to go. They just want the money, and they want to give their cards away,” said Hernandez.

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