Since 1996, federal law required adults without children or disabilities who are eligible for Supplemental Nutritional Assistance Program benefits (SNAP, i.e., food stamps) to meet certain work requirements in order to receive the benefits. In 2009, a federal waiver lifted work requirements for these Able-Bodied Adults Without Dependents (ABAWD), as states around the country experienced higher unemployment, and fewer jobs were available.
As the economy has recovered, many states are no longer eligible for the ABAWD waiver. Connecticut is no longer eligible for a statewide waiver, but, according to the Department of Social Services (DSS), 82 towns will continue to be subject to the waiver, while 87 towns now have work requirements for ABAWDs. The change is effective January 1, 2016.