Deep cuts were made to the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP), effective on November 1st. As a result, $5 billion will be cut from the SNAP program (previously and still colloquially known as “food stamps”) for fiscal year 2014, affecting about 47 million people.
According to theNew York City Coalition Against Hunger the average household of four will see their benefits drop $36 a month, down to $239. That’s a stark difference from the $290 the same family of four received in 2010. The slash in benefits is even more startling when coupled with the rising cost of food, which has gone up 16% in the New York area since 2007.
As the Food Bank of New York City notes, SNAP is extremely well-run and acts more as temporary aid instead of a long-term solution for its participants: 95% of the program’s budget goes directly to benefits, 92% of benefit recipients who can work do so, and half of all recipients leave the program within a year.
Perhaps most importantly in the wake of the recent government shutdown thatcost the US economy $24 billion, SNAP is a significant boost to the economy, with every $1 in benefits generating $1.73 for the economy. The Center for American Progressestimates that each $1 billion reduction in SNAP will eliminate 13,718 jobs, with the majority coming from food-related industries.
Learn more about the problems these cuts to SNAP will cause and what you can do to stop them by visitingHungerCliff.org