The New Haven Register and other Hearst Media newspapers in Connecticut recently published an Op-Ed from Connecticut Food Bank CEO Valarie Shultz-Wilson regarding harmful rules changes to SNAP proposed by the USDA that could negatively affect thousands of Connecticut residents who participate in the SNAP program and millions of SNAP participants nationwide. The rules are open to public comment through September 23.
The Connecticut Food Bank opposes these rule changes. Read our CEO’s commentary here. Some highlights:
“The proposed changes would take away state authority to locally determine need and make it harder for families to earn and save their way out of poverty. These changes aim to overrule a bipartisan Congress’s rejection of previous Trump administration attempts to implement these harmful changes.”
“SNAP is a lifeline for people who struggle to get adequate nutrition. By providing a benefit that is used at local grocers, SNAP also supports jobs in our communities.”
“The Broad-Based Categorical Eligibility rule the administration seeks to eliminate allows states local control to factor in both higher costs of living and reduced employment opportunity in setting eligibility levels. The categorical eligibility also reduces government costs by providing a simple tool for determining eligibility for other programs, such as free or reduced-price school meals.”
Nearly half of all jobs in Connecticut fail to provide income to cover a “survival” budget for housing, food, health care, and child care basics.
Households cut from SNAP will turn to a charitable food assistance network that already struggles to meet needs in Connecticut and nationally. For every meal a food bank makes possible in the U.S., the SNAP program provides 12. That is a hurdle we can’t leap, no matter how generous our donors might be.
Learn more about the rules change and submit a comment about the rules at a special site hosted by Feeding America.