Anti-hunger groups began raising the alarm about the impact of the drop-off of Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program benefits several months ago.
Tom Nelson, president of Share Our Strength, said smaller benefits mean families will need advice on how to stretch dollars and not fall back on cheap foods that provide empty calories but little nutrition. Nelson said this will be particularly important for families with young children.
At a Capitol Hill briefing in September, Share Our Strength and several nonprofit groups called for continued funding for SNAP education, a nutrition program designed to work with low-income families on food choices.
“For some folks it sounds like that’s sort of nice. No, it’s a necessity when you have to stretch the dollars to get the most that you can at the best quality that you can,” Nelson said.
Under the House farm bill, funding for state grants under the nutrition education and obesity education program would be reduced by $274 million over 10 years.
Rep. Elijah Cummings, D-Md., right, hugs Harold Schaitberger, General President of the International Association of Fire Fighters, after the Congressman spoke at the IAFF's Legislative Conference General Session at the Hyatt Regency on Capitol Hill, March 9, 2015. The day featured addresses by members of Congress and Vice President Joe Biden.