What do you consider welfare?
We get and qualify for WIC--for our 2 year old. The other kids are too old and I'm not currently pregnant. So, we get maybe $50, if that, of food a month. If I was able to actually get over to the Social Security office, my kids might qualify for disability payments. I can't get over there--have canceled several appointments--due to work. Someone calling a meeting or needing my presence.
We were on food stamps at one point. The "luxury" item we bought was maybe generic popsicles or the generic oreo-like cookies. (75 cents for a huge package). If there was enough on the card at the end of the month. And I learned to clean with baking soda and vinegar. It was a relief when we finally qualified...our food budget before had been $150 a month for a family of 4. (DH made minimum wage, but it had medical coverage and deep discounts--read free for after the first year and 1/2 price the first year for my law school and I was in law school living on student aid). Then I got my current job (never finished law school--got mobilized in the military and went active duty once my mobilization was up). We no longer qualified, but made enough that it didn't matter, at least enough that we could eat fairly healthfully.
ETA: And, honestly, if I want to get one bottle of Two Buck Chuck on my birthday--and I pay for it with money earned from my job, as long as you don't pay for the other groceries with food stamps, who would know?
Though I do feel bad for all the grey-area people (make to much to qualify for aid, but not enough to "make it" on your own.) That is where I think the biggest problems lie. To know that if you made $40 more per week, you'd lose your child care assistance and food stamps and housing assistance. It may make you really consider whether that $1 per hour raise or that overtime is worth it... Yes, I do know people that really are that close. To know that if you got a raise, you'd lose your benefits, but be worse off. Saving money is discouraged--got $2000? You are off the Program. The safety-net can be a trap.