The Trump Administration is once again trying to cut the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) for millions of Americans. USDA's latest proposal seeks to limit categorical eligibility for SNAP, which would result in more than 3 million people losing their nutrition benefits. HFA CEO Joel Berg spoke to CBS this week about what makes this proposal especially counter-productive.
We fiercely oppose this illegal proposal, which would take away flexibility from states to allow struggling Americans to save funds while working their way out of poverty and still receive SNAP. This proposal is illegal since it clearly violates federal law previously agreed to by the President and Congress in the 2018 Farm Bill.
If enacted, this regulation would not only make millions of low-income working Americans more food insecure and make it harder for them to work their way out of poverty, but it would also take food away from hundreds of thousands of low-income children who would lose school meals eligibility. Lastly, this proposed regulation is wholly inconsistent with USDA Secretary Perdue's previous claims that he wants to increase flexibility for states to regulate SNAP.
Given that the department is lavishing more than $10 million in corporate welfare on agribusinesses harmed by the President's trade policies, it is particularly outrageous that USDA is seeking to "save" money by making working families and children hungrier. Hunger Free America's 2018 U.S. Hunger Atlas, which is based on USDA ERA data, documents — on a state-by-state basis — the massive food insecurity faced by children, working people, and older adults in America. USDA should be working to decrease — not increase — this problem.
Help us fight this nonsensical proposal in two ways:
1. The USDA is required to take public comments into consideration until September 23, 2019 before making the regulation final. Make your voice heard by taking just a few minutes to legally register your opposition to this unjust proposal.
As just one example, Lori A. of New York, NY, one of the nearly 4,000 people who have commented on the proposal in just two days, wrote:
“This regulation would affect hundreds of thousands of kids who would lose their eligibility for school meals. We used to be a country that cared about our children and their futures. If kids don't get enough nutrition, they do poorly in their studies and then have a harder time becoming productive, strong members of our society later in life. It seems to me that we are paying far more for increased health care costs if you cut this funding than the government will save."