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How Many People Are on Welfare in 2023?

How Many People Are on Welfare in 2023?

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Have you ever wondered, “How many people are on welfare?” A valuable resource for those with limited income, welfare helps countless people survive throughout America. But how exactly is the welfare situation evolving?

Welfare numbers change regularly in today’s evolving economy. However, some useful insights are available into the percentage of people leveraging this support. Read on to learn more about the welfare situation in the United States.

How Many People Are on Welfare in the United States?

According to the Social Security Administration, the number of people on welfare in 2021 was around 65 million. The report notes that nearly 9 out of 10 people aged 65 and older were receiving some form of social security benefit at the end of 2020.

Additionally, when considering the demographics of Americans on welfare, the report suggests that 12% of men and 15% of women receive 90% of their income from social security.


Exploring the Number of Americans on Welfare

The US Social Security Administration and the government contributed millions of dollars worth of support to welfare programs in 2021. As the number of people in America continues to increase and wages remain low, the percentage of the population on welfare is likely to increase.

The US spent $1.5 trillion on welfare in 2021.

While the exact amount a person can claim on welfare varies, the US government places significant funding into social security support and financial assistance. In 2021, the government spent around $1.5 trillion on welfare. This number is expected to decrease to $1.3 trillion by the end of 2022.

Supporting the current amount of people on welfare will account for approximately 22% of the federal budget for 2022.

(US Government Spending)

Around $3.5 trillion of the federal budget in 2019 was financed by taxpayers.

In the 2019 fiscal year, the US spent $1 trillion on social security benefits, from a total budget of $4.4 trillion. Of the total $4.4 trillion budget, $3.5 trillion came from federal revenues. The $1 trillion in the social security budget paid for the US population on welfare, as well as the pensions for 45 million retired workers.


In 2022, SNAP paid an average of $243.43 per household.

The amount of financial assistance a person receives on welfare differs according to the kind of support they get and the state they live in. The average welfare check per month distributed by SNAP was calculated to be $243.42 per person and $460.64 per household in 2022.

The government also announced the potential of raising the maximum payment people can receive on SNAP.


In 2019, 36.5% of welfare recipients were white.

Statistics into welfare recipients by race are limited, as reports are only published every couple of years. However, the most recent SNAP report suggests that 36.5% of recipients were white in 2019. A further 25.8% of respondents were African American, while 16% were Hispanic. 1.5% of respondents identified as Native American.


California has the highest number of SNAP recipients.

In a review of the states with the most welfare recipients claiming SNAP support, the World Population Review found California had the highest number of welfare recipients (3,789,000). Texas followed closely behind with 3,406,000 SNAP recipients, followed by Florida with 2,847,000, and New York with 2,661,000.

In Wyoming and Utah, only 5% of the state residents are recipients of SNAP, the lowest percentage in the United States.

(World Population Review)

Retired workers and dependents account for 75.2% of the benefits paid in 2020.


There are a total of six different benefits or welfare payments available to US citizens as of 2022. According to the Social Security Administration, the largest percentage of the American population on welfare are retirees and their dependents (75.2%). They receive an average monthly benefit of around $1,555 per person.

Disabled workers and their dependents accounted for only 13.1% of the benefits paid in 2020, receiving an average welfare check per month of $1,280.

The Changing Nature of Welfare in the US

Welfare payments continue to be a significant source of income for a huge percentage of Americans, particularly those who are no longer working. Though it’s difficult to get a clear view of the demographics of welfare recipients, the statistics show people all over the country benefit from access to state and government assistance.


Rebekah Carter
Rebekah Carter
Rebekah Carter is a dedicated online marketing professional and writer. With experience in the world of entrepreneurial development, business growth, communication and collaboration, and even health and fitness, Rebekah is constantly looking for ways to expand her expertise, and share her knowledge with the digital world.