Saturday, June 15, 2013

Santa Fe New Mexican Editorial Urges Support for SNAP

The New Mexican, the daily newspaper in our state capital, posted a great editorial about protecting SNAP and supporting Rep. Michelle Lujan Grisham's participation in the SNAP challenge. Here is a big part of the editorial, followed by a link:

Our View: Food programs need support
Sure it’s a stunt, but this one comes at the right time. Twenty-six members of Congress are living off a food stamp budget for a week — that’s $4.50 a day for food — to bring attention to proposed House Republican cuts to the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP). U.S. Rep. Michelle Lujan Grisham, a Democrat from Albuquerque, is taking the challenge, and we can’t wait to hear more about her experience; on her first day, she ate a can of tuna and an apple for lunch. (You can follow the week on Twitter at #SNAPchallenge.)

This matters to New Mexicans. We just found out this week that our state ranks first in the country for child hunger and second for adult hunger. One out of three children in our state doesn’t always have enough to eat, according to the hunger relief group, Feeding America. Twenty percent of adults don’t always know where they will get their next meal. Having SNAP available is essential to keeping people fed. Such benefits should be expanded, not cut, especially when people are still struggling.

But Congress wants to cut food stamps, with the House considering legislation that would dump another 2 million off the rolls through changes in the Farm Bill. The Senate version of the Farm Bill has less onerous cuts, but some Republicans want SNAP taken out of farm legislation entirely to make it easier to take food out of people’s mouths. “Unfortunately, the rapid growth of this program has only increased dependency on government and added to our federal deficit,” a group of 25 conservative GOP members led by Rep. Paul Broun, R-Ga., said in a letter to House leadership on Tuesday. “We believe the current, unwieldy format of the Farm Bill will hinder meaningful reforms to all portions of the legislation, harming American farmers in the process.”

Read full editorial

No comments: