SNAP Cuts Leave Local Families and Neighbors Struggling
Thanksgiving is a time for families to come together over a hearty meal and reflect on the past year’s blessings and challenges. But this November, many American families will have a much harder time putting food on the table. The increases in SNAP/Food Stamp benefits (also known as Food Stamps) provided by the “stimulus package” (the 2009 American Reinvestment & Recovery Act, or ARRA) will expire on November 1, leading to a SNAP cliff of across-the-board cuts to all recipients. In 2012, there were 259,741 households in the Delaware Valley receiving SNAP benefits.
A household of four will lose $36 per month, with commensurate reductions for households of other sizes. The cut will be the equivalent of taking away 21 meals per month for a family of four, or 16 meals for a family of three. In total, these cuts amount to roughly $5 billion for the 2014 fiscal year.
Such drastic reductions will devastate the already fragile food security of households & families receiving SNAP/Food Stamp benefits. If a household provides three meals a day to each member, the average budget per meal will be reduced to less than $1.40 per person—barely enough to survive on, let alone use to prepare Thanksgiving dinner.
With these harsh cuts in place, it is more important than ever to advocate for people and families in need. Almost 50 million of our country’s most vulnerable citizens, or 1 in 6 Americans, rely on this program, and further reductions in benefits will vastly increase hunger and food insecurity across the nation.