Join After the Harvest in supporting programs that feed hungry people.
From Modern Farmer, by Brian Barth, July 13, 2017: President Donald Trump has proposed deep cuts to funding for the USDA’s Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program, commonly referred to as food stamps. The administration’s fiscal year 2018 budget seeks a $193.3 billion decrease in SNAP funding over the next decade, a nearly 30 percent reduction over current levels. Such deep cuts have virtually no chance of gaining congressional approval, but they lay bare the President’s approach to our nation’s security net. Who stands to lose?
The 42 million Americans—13 percent of the population—who currently receive SNAP benefits, which include low income families, the elderly, people with disabilities, and those who have lost a job are the most obvious. They receive an average of about $4.17 per day, or $1.39 per meal.
But public welfare is only part of the picture. SNAP plays a role in the broader economy, providing an expanded customer base to grocers and farmers, for example. It’s also a safety net that keeps people off the streets, out of hospitals, and away from illicit activity. When money for food is a constant concern for millions of people, taxpayers ultimately foot the bill for the associated increase in healthcare costs, homeless shelters, and incarceration. Here’s who’s going to feel the hurt: kids, minorities, the elderly, disabled people, people looking for jobs, the working poor, local legislators, farmers and grocers, farm workers, Trump voters…