ROME'S WELFARE: Problems Within the System


Back Then:
  1. Rome was mainly made up of lower-class people, so a welfare program was needed.
  2. The Roman Welfare System was called Annona.
  3. Like today, food tokens (tesserae) were given to those who could not get their own food.
  4. Those who received tesserae would go to a gov. warehouse where grain, flour, and occasionally meat was rationed out.
  5. The Annona System was started because the food supply was considered the governments duty.
  6. The program started as corn stalls, where corn from other regions was brought in and sold for a moderate price, later purchased through tokens
  7. On occasions, wine, oil, and meat were distributed to the lower-class people
  8. Sometimes "liberal donations" were made which sometimes included money, corn, wine, and oil
  9. The welfare program was used in regions. People from Sicily would only take care of others from Sicily, and wouldn't need to care about places such as Spain or Gaule.
  10. In the beginning of it all, the people who were pagan would not give to the poor who were Christian



  1. The US Welfare System was started during the Great Depression in the 1930's. It was created to respond to the great number individuals who were receiving little to no income.
  2. The Welfare System has existed for around 80 years.
  3. The Welfare System varies from state to state, but most states ration out food stamps and cash aid.

Fears, etc.
  1. Many people are not satisfied with the welfare system because they fear that some are abusing the privilege.
  2. It is said that people are just living off of welfare and not applying for jobs, not making any income.

Eligibility/ Application
  1. Welfare can depend on the size of your family, any medical help assistance needed (like pregnancy), and homelessness.

Fraud, etc
  1. The definition of "fraud" in the welfare system varies. It can be just withholding important information, to misusing the system to reap benefits that you don't need.
  2. Mostly, fraud takes place when individuals on welfare don't report any income that they are recieving, so continue to recieve money, food, and other supplies
  3. Also failing to tell about all family members is counted as "fraud."
  4. Welfare fraud is extremely expensive. If the system has millions of frauds every year, then they just simply are wasting money on providing for people who are capable of providing for themselves. Not all welfare users are fraudulent, but it can happen, and often does
  5. By including all of your personal information welfare fraud can be avoided.

Helpful Websites:

Possible Contact:

Bibliography/ Resources:

Crystalinks. "Ancient Roman Diet - Crystalinks." Crystalinks Home Page. Web. 07 Feb. 2011. <>.

Welfare Information. US Welfare System - Help for US Citizens. Web. 08 Feb. 2011. <>.

College of Saint Benedict. "American Social Welfare Policy." College of Saint Benedict & Saint John's University. Web. 08 Feb. 2011.

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