PETERBOROUGH, N.H. (FOX 25 / MyFoxBoston.com) - A store clerk in New Hampshire was reportedly fired after she refused to let a customer use his EBT card to purchase cigarettes.
Jackie Whiton did not know people in New Hampshire could use EBT cards, government assistance funds, to buy things like beer and cigarettes, but she does now. She wants New Hampshire to follow states like Massachusetts in cracking down on the use of the EBT cash option.
Whiton told FOX 25 that the incident occurred after she asked a customer at the Big Apple Convenience Store in Peterborough for identification. The customer was buying beer and cigarettes.
Instead of handing over his identification, the customer gave her an EBT card.
Whiton refused to accept the card as payment and said the next day his foster mother complained to her and the store owner, C.N. Brown Company.
She was fired the next day.
"People work hard for their money. And it's there hard earned money that's paying for these people that can use these cards as a debit card, and I think it's a huge burden on the taxpayers," Whiton said.
The New Hampshire Department of Health and Human Services told FOX 25 they are not happy about it, but EBT cards can be used for just about anything, except venues of adult entertainment, like casinos, strip clubs, and liquor stores.
Whiton is petitioning New Hampshire State Officials to crack down on EBT card usage and follow the lead of Massachusetts.
In April, Massachusetts state and federal law enforcement caught dozens of people accused of committing welfare fraud by selling their own food stamps for cash.
Both the House and the Senate have included restriction on welfare benefits in their budgets, including usage in places like nail salons and tattoo shops. There is a also a proposal to spend $100,000 to study how Massachusetts could move to an entirely cashless system.
The measures are awaiting final approval.
Calls placed to C.N. Brown Company which is based in Maine were not returned.