Saturday, July 11, 2015

Anti-Hunger Advocates Urge You to Oppose Gov. Martinez's Proposal to Expand Work-Related Requirements for SNAP

Image from SWOP
This past Wednesday, a group of anti-hunger organizations hosted a town hall meeting to to allow the public an opportunity to make comments on a proposal by Gov. Susana Martinez's administration to expand work-related requirements on low-income New Mexicans to qualify for food stamps. Under the plan, the state would restore a 20-hour-a-week work requirement for an estimated 26,600 childless adults to get food stamps.

In conjunction with the town hall, the Lutheran Advocacy Ministry-New Mexico, the New Mexico Center on Law and Poverty, the South West Organizing Project (SWOP) and New Mexico Voices for Children are all urging their supporters to contact the governor's office to oppose the new SNAP rules.  The action alert below was sent out by  New Mexico Voices for Children, but all three other organizations are asking supporters to take take the same action.

Call the Governor Susana Martinez’s office before Friday, July 17, to Oppose Expanded Work Requirements for the SNAP Program in New Mexico

What You Might Say: “Please don’t require parents, kids under age 18 and adults over 50 do unpaid work to get SNAP benefits. New Mexico has the third highest rate of hunger in the country and we cannot afford policies that unnecessarily limit food assistance for our families.”

Contact Info: Email HSD at or call Governor Martinez’s
at 505-476-2200.

Image from Lutheran Advocacy Ministry
Background: New Mexico has the nation's third highest rate of child hunger. Despite our hunger problem, the state is proposing to make it even more difficult for families to provide for their children. The state Human Services Department (HSD) has proposed new regulations that would require unemployed parents to work 20 hours a week—and if they can’t find paid work, they must volunteer—in order to continue receiving food stamps. The proposed new regulations go far beyond what the federal government requires and will place an additional burden on parents who are already struggling to find work and put food on the table.

New Mexico Center on Law and Poverty
The expanded work requirement is proposed for parents with children over age 6, young people ages 16-18 who are not in school, and adults up to age 60. The state plans to spend $1.5 million of your tax dollars to implement this new work requirement. There are several problems with these requirements, not the least of which is the state’s continued poor economy and jobs market. Requiring parents who cannot find a job to do unpaid work puts financial strains on their families. And youth should be encouraged to stay in school—not to go to work.

In collaboration with our allies in the nonprofit and faith communities, we are organizing a campaign to ensure that the people are heard regarding these harsh and harmful rules. 

1 comment:

Michelle Meaders said...

Southwest Organizing Project (SWOP) is running a free bus to the hearing in Santa Fe on Friday.

"Ride the bus and join us to tell the Governor that New Mexicans should not have to do unpaid work activity to get food for their families.
Attend the Public Hearing 7/17 Proposed Work Rules for SNAP at the DOH Harold Runnels Building Auditorium,1190 S. St. Francis Drive, Santa Fe, NM.

Bus leaves at 10:30am July 17, 2015 from 211 10th St SW, Albuquerque, NM 87102
Email or call (505)247-8832 by July 16 to reserve your spot!"

Facebook event page: Ride the BUS! Protect SNAP!