Final USDA Rule Threatens to Take Food Away from Nearly 700,000 People — Increasing Hunger in South Carolina

Recently, the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) released a final rule that will cut Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) benefits for 680,000 people.

SNAP helps thousands of South Carolinians put food on the table. While everyone experiencing a rough patch should be able to use SNAP, the program already places strict time limits on non-disabled participants, ages 18 to 50, who are not caring for children. The current program also restricts access to nutritious food to only three months every three years, unless the individual is working at least 20 hours a week or participating in a workforce program or training.

Reducing SNAP benefits from the plates of people facing hunger each year will not help people find and maintain steady, full-time jobs. Feeding them will.

Many of our neighbors facing these time limits must overcome barriers that make finding and keeping adequate work difficult, including the lack of transportation and irregular work schedules.

Every day, the Lowcountry Food Bank and our partner food pantries accomplish the huge task of helping children, seniors, working families and veterans make ends meet by providing food. This cut to SNAP benefits will create a larger gap in food access for our neighbors who need it most.

While the Lowcountry Food Bank remains steadfast in our commitment to feed those in our community who are food insecure, we need the help of federal nutrition programs and hope the USDA will join us in the fight against hunger and rescind its harmful rule.

 

Pat Walker
President and CEO
The Lowcountry Food Bank

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