U.S. House 2018 Budget
U.S. House Budget Would Endanger Older Adults, People Living with Disabilities and Children
Statement from Lisa Hamler-Fugitt, executive director of the Ohio Association of Foodbanks:
“This week, the U.S. House Budget Committee approved its 2018 budget resolution, which strips billions of dollars from a program that helps working families, seniors and people living with disabilities put food on the table. The budget includes major reductions in funding for the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP), formerly known as food stamps, in addition to drastic cuts to other programs that expand economic opportunity for everyday Ohioans.
SNAP is one of the most cost-effective tools we have in the fight against hunger and poverty. In Ohio, about 85 percent of all SNAP participants are children, seniors or people with disabilities. Not only is it the right thing to do to make sure everyone has enough nutritious food to eat, it’s also good for our entire economy. When families can afford to buy groceries, it pumps money back into local businesses, instead of putting more families into our food pantry lines more frequently. This budget plan would devastate millions of families – and the businesses that rely on their spending.
Before we made a national commitment to end hunger, some areas of the country, including Ohio’s Appalachian region, had serious problems with hunger, including children suffering from malnutrition. Although the help that SNAP provides is extremely modest – averaging only $1.38 per person per meal in Ohio – the program keeps more than eight million people out of poverty nationwide, including nearly four million children.
Ohio’s charitable hunger relief network is committed to feeding the hungry in our community. But if Ohio families lose SNAP benefits, we won’t be able to make up the difference. Members of Ohio’s congressional delegation should protect SNAP and other poverty-reduction programs in the federal budget. We all win when our communities are healthy and prosperous.”