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Significant Digits for Thursday, Dec. 5, 2019

You’re reading Significant Digits, a daily digest of the numbers tucked inside the news.


688,000 Americans

On Wednesday, the Trump administration confirmed changes to work requirements for food stamp recipients that would result in approximately 688,000 Americans losing access to the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program, also known as SNAP. Currently, states can waive work requirements in areas with high unemployment, but the new rule would restrict that waiver ability to areas where the unemployment rate is 6 percent or higher. Sen. Debbie Stabenow of Michigan criticized the move, saying “All the rule change does is strip people from accessing the benefit.” [NBC News]


130 points or more

Scoring 130 points or more in an NHL season is pretty unusual for a player and hasn’t been done since the 1995-96 season, when both Mario Lemieux and Jaromír Jágr accomplished it while playing for the Pittsburgh Penguins. So two pairs of teammates doing it in one season is an even rarer statistic. Therefore, it’s pretty notable that Brad Marchand and David Pastrňák of the Boston Bruins as well as Connor McDavid and Leon Draisaitl of the Edmonton Oilers are all on track for this feat, despite the fact there is more than 50 games left in the regular season. FiveThirtyEight’s Terrence Doyle found that consistent performance helps, as “each player has scored a point or more in at least 74 percent of the games he’s played.” [FiveThirtyEight]


0 inventory

Canada Goose is known for its four-figure plush winter coats famously used in sub-Arctic temperatures by explorers, but in its latest “store” in Toronto shoppers won’t be able to leave with a coat physically in hand. Bloomberg News reports that the retailer is now trying out a new sales strategy that involves experiential rooms designed to simulate specific outdoor locations like icy rock faces using 4K video screens and temperatures of 10 degrees Fahrenheit. Customers are assisted by employees that act as tour guides and help complete purchases via a touchscreen device. [Bloomberg News]


100 pedal-assisted cargo bikes

An incredible number of packages and delivery trucks travel through New York City on a daily basis, clogging up streets, worsening gridlock and increasing pollution. But on Wednesday, the city announced a new program that might help with the problem: The use of 100 pedal-assisted electric cargo bikes from companies like Amazon and DHL. The initiative includes the ability to park in commercial loading areas and on wider sidewalks, utilize the city’s network of bike lanes, and avoid the cost of parking meters in certain locations. [New York Times]


5.1 times higher rate of incarceration

There are signs that racial and ethic disparities in the U.S. criminal justice system are declining, but in 2016, black people were still incarcerated at a rate 5.1 times higher than white people. That’s one of the findings in the first major report from the independent, bipartisan Council on Criminal Justice, which looked at the populations in U.S. prisons and jails, as well as individuals on parole and probation, between 2000 and 2016. It’s worth noting that in 2000 the rate at which black people were incarcerated was much higher at 8.3 times the rate white people were imprisoned. [Washington Post]


25-month sentence

I’ve definitely toyed with the idea in the past of exaggerating my language abilities on my résumé to make them look more impressive. But Veronica Hilda Theriault went much, much further and paid a pretty serious price for her résumé padding. On Tuesday, Theriault was sentenced to 25 months in jail after being convicted on charges of deception, dishonesty, and abuse of public office. The crime? She submitted a resume in 2017 riddled with false information about her education and previous employment experience, and even pretended to be a previous employer who gave “glowing feedback” during a reference check to a high-profile government job in Australia. [CNN]


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