Food Stamp Debit Cards Failing To Work In 17 States
Worries over high inflation led new RBI chief Raghuram Rajan to surprise markets last month with an interest rate hike. Many analysts now expect him to raise interest rates by another 25 basis points on October 29, even after data showing economic growth in the June quarter hit a four-year low. “The pickup in inflation is testament to the lingering inflation risks and underscores the need for the RBI to keep its inflation guards up,” said Leif Lybecker Eskesen, Chief Economist for India & ASEAN at HSBC in a note. Federal bond yields posted their biggest advance in three weeks after the data firmed up expectations for a second consecutive rate hike in as many months. The benchmark 10-year government bond yield ended up 8 basis points on the day at 8.57 percent, its highest since September 23. Other data showed consumer prices rose 9.84 percent year-on-year in September, the fastest pace in three months. Economists in a Reuters poll last week had forecast an annual 9.60 percent rise in retail prices. India is not the only major emerging market wrestling with inflation and high food costs – China’s consumer inflation hit a seven-month high of 3.1 percent in September. But the pace of growth in food prices in India stood out, rising to an annual 18.40 percent last month, the fastest clip since July 2010 and triple the 6.1 percent rise seen in China. Inflation data comes on the heels of Friday’s disappointing industrial output numbers. Output grew a much-slower-than expected 0.6 percent in August, hurt by weak investment and consumer demand, dashing hopes of an economic rebound by the end of the year. STAGFLATION?
Smith said that typically when the cards aren’t working retailers can call a backup phone number to find out how much money customers have available in their account. But that information also was unavailable because of the outage, so customers weren’t able to use their cards. “It really is a bad situation but they are working to get it fixed as soon as possible,” Smith said. In Clarksdale, Miss. one of the poorest parts of one of the poorest states in the nation cashier Eliza Shook said dozens of customers at Corner Grocery had to put back groceries when the cards failed Saturday because they couldn’t afford to pay for the food. After several hours, she put a sign on the front door to tell people about the problem. “It’s been terrible,” Shook said in a phone interview. “It’s just been some angry folks. That’s what a lot of folks depend on.” Mississippi Department of Human Services director Rickey Berry confirmed that Xerox, the state’s EBT vendor, had computer problems. “I know there are a lot of mad people,” Berry said. Sheree Powell, a spokeswoman for the Oklahoma Department of Human Services, started receiving calls around 11:30 a.m. about problems with the state’s card systems.
Food Safety Lawyer Ron Simon Files Two More E. coli Lawsuits Linked to Contaminated Romaine Lettuce Sold at Schnucks
Louis stemming from a multi-state E. coli O157:H7 outbreak linked to contaminated romaine lettuce sold at Schnucks salad bars during October 2011. The lawsuits were filed in St. Louis County, Missouri on behalf of Angela Crowell and Mark Bassemier against Schnucks Markets, Vaughan Foods, and others. Copies of the file-stamped lawsuits are available upon request. The Schnucks Romaine Lettuce E. Coli O157:H7 Outbreak 60 Victims in 10 States In October of 2011, the Food and Drug Administration identified an outbreak of E. coli O157:H7 linked to romaine lettuce sold at Schnucks grocery stores. The collaborative investigation efforts of state, local, and federal public health agencies indicated that the outbreak resulted in the infection of at least 60 persons across 10 states. Approximately 70% of the victims were hospitalized. The majority of the victims reported purchasing romaine lettuce from Schnucks’ salad bars between October 5 and October 24, 2011. http://www.cdc.gov/ecoli/2011/ecoliO157/romainelettuce/120711/index.html Angela Crowell’s E. coli O157:H7 Infection On October 16, 2011, Angela Crowell consumed a salad containing romaine lettuce from the Schnucks located at 8301 Bell Oaks Drive in Newburgh, Indiana (the same store where Mr. Bassemier purchased his contaminated salad). Shortly thereafter, she began to suffer the symptoms of E. coli food poisoning, including vomiting, diarrhea, nausea, and severe abdominal cramping. As a nurse, she became alarmed when she noticed that her stool contained a significant amount of blood. She was taken to Deaconess Gateway Hospital in Evansville, Indiana, where she was admitted, diagnosed with colitis, and placed on an IV to administer medications and to prevent dehydration. As the abdominal pain and bloody diarrhea continued, she was given Cipro and Flagyl to fight the colitis. Her physician ordered a colonoscopy for the following day which revealed severe hemorrhagic colitis. Her physicians also had a stool culture performed to determine the cause of her illness.
No more food inspections and for some, no more food, as Republican shutdown grinds along on Day 14
During the first half of 2012, CPSC inspectors had prevented over one million products from hitting the shelves. Hospital and nursing home inspections in Illinois are being scaled back because of the shutdown. The Illinois Department of Public Health gets about $1.3 million a month to pay for inspections of medical facilities, but that money’s been stopped because of the shutdown. IDPH spokeswoman Melaney Arnold said the agency is still inspecting facilities when there are specific complaints about a location. She said: “A couple of weeks may not have that big of an impact. If the shutdown persists for an extended period of time, cash flow and supporting federal programs will become a more critical issue in the weeks ahead.” NBC highlights some voices of people telling the impact of the shutdown on them personally: a furloughed federal worker, a fishing guide, a college student. In Tennessee, nearly 400 employees of the Department of Labor and Workforce Development and the Department of Human Services have been furloughed as of Monday because they are partially funded by federal monies. Labor and Workforce gets 79 percent of its budget from the feds. The state’s Disabilities Determination Division “is continuing to operate and serve Tennesseans at this point,” according to HHS spokesman Christopher Garrett. But he noted that the division “is 100 percent federally funded. If the shutdown continues, the DDS operation will be impacted further.” In New Mexico, as in all the other states , many military veterans are worried about what happens if the shutdown isn’t over before $6 billion in benefit checks are scheduled to be paid. The 8,000 Veterans Administration employees who handle the benefits system are on furlough and nobody is processing the more than 250,000 disability claims that are already backlogged for months. Thousands of the nation’s five million veterans living in the Land of Enchantment who receive disability checks, pension payments and college assistance on the GI Bill are at risk.