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Lawsuit filed over Trump administration's limits on food stamps


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Image result for trump food stamps cartoon

 

 

 

"An estimated 688,000 individuals will lose their SNAP benefits, and nearly 1M kids could lose their eligibility for free lunch under Trump administration proposal."

 

Bullying the malnourished is a new low. Republicans always lower the bar.

 

 

 

https://www.msn.com/en-us/news/us/lawsuit-filed-over-trump-administrations-limits-on-food-stamps/ar-BBZ2aGo?ocid=spartandhp

(Full article at above link)

 

 

A coalition of 15 states and New York City is suing the Trump administration over a recent rule from the Agriculture Department that could cause hundreds of thousands to lose benefits under the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program, also known as "food stamps."

New York State Attorney General   District of Columbia Attorney   announced Thursday they are leading the coalition, arguing that the "rule directly undermines Congress' intent for SNAP, and that the USDA violated the federal rulemaking process," 

The rule, announced in December 2019, would require more stringent work requirements in order for eligibility for SNAP.

"Further, they argue that the rule would impose significant regulatory burdens on the states and harm states' economies and residents," the news release said, later adding that it would "deny access to food assistance for more than 50,000 people in New York City, and put tens of thousands more throughout New York State at risk of going hungry."

At the time it was announced, Department of Agriculture Secretary Sonny Perdue said the new regulation would restore the "original intent" of SNAP. The new rule would raise the standard for states to receive waivers from specific work requirements depending on an area's unemployment rate and job availability.

"The new Rule eliminates State discretion and criteria regarding local economic conditions for waiving work requirements, resulting in the termination of essential food assistance for benefits recipients who live in areas with insufficient jobs," the complaint reads.

James, in the news release, called the rule "cruel to its core."

"Denying access to vital SNAP benefits would only push hundreds of thousands of already vulnerable Americans into greater economic uncertainty. In so doing, states will have to grapple with rising healthcare and homelessness costs that will result from this shortsighted and ill-conceived policy," James said.

The final rule was widely criticized when it was announced last year, including by members of Congress.

Sen. Chuck Schumer called the rule "heartless" and "cruel."

 

 

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Awwwwww. Poor things.

 

They are NOT going to want to GO TO WORK in order to get their FREE TEAT to suck.

 

Afraid that PERSONAL RESPONSIBILITY is something that once you instill it in people, you lose voters???

 

God, you schitstains are PATHETIC and some SICK MOTHER FUC'KERS taboot.

 

 

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2 hours ago, Old Mack said:

 

You're a racist...everyone in the PIC is Black; which shows them in a bad light.

 

I hadn't noticed. I don't focus on such superficial things as the shade of one's skin. I'm not surprised given the deep institutionalized racism in this country. Thank you for pointing it out. I'm sure you noticed immediately.

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Oh no! In the Peoples Comm. of Mass. slackers sell their food stamps for crack. .50 cents on the dollar is the going rate. If their food stamps are cut off they will not be able to make the choice to buy crack and smack. Some of these poor souls might get rehabbed and get off the dole. Food stamp abuse is rampant. 

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SNAP’s Strong Response during the Great Recession

The Great Recession, the most severe financial crisis since the founding of the food stamp program more than 50 years ago, proved that during an intense economic downturn, SNAP worked just as it was intended, as an automatic stabilizer.4 In so doing, the program was able to meet the increased need for food assistance, offsetting the intense nationwide economic downturn.

 

SNAP participation increased significantly as the unemployment rate peaked at 10 percent during the Great Recession. In FY2008, over 28 million people received SNAP, and rates steadily climbed as the Recession continuedpeaking at over 47 million in FY2013and has since declined consistent with decreased unemployment and an improved overall economy.

 

For several reasons, overall SNAP participation is still higher than pre-Recession rates. Technological improvements and administrative streamlining over the last several years have enabled states to ensure that those who qualify can receive SNAP for as long as they remain eligible.6 

 

Additionally, changes in the economy as a result of the Recession have created more low-wage jobs with inadequate and volatile working hours, which are disproportionately held by low-skilled and low-income workers7many of whom still require food assistance.

 

The rate of SNAP participants who work has increased over the last several decades. In 2015, 60 percent of SNAP households with children and at least one non-elderly, non-disabled adult had earnings while receiving benefits. Many more SNAP participants work just before or after receiving food assistance, highlighting the role of SNAP as a support during and between periods of employment.8

 

The increase in the number of people receiving SNAP during the Recession shows the program’s responsiveness to increased need. As the unemployment rate increased, the need for SNAP also increased. 

 

The program’s federally financed structure means it is available to an uncapped number of people as long as they meet eligibility requirements, allowing it to provide a safety net to historic numbers of people during the Recession who found themselves in need of food assistance and qualified due to their low income.

 

Participation among already-eligible households also increased during the Recession. By comparison, the federal Temporary Assistance to Needy Families (TANF) program, which provides cash assistance to the very poor, did not respond during the Recession. 

 

TANF is structured as a block grant, meaning that states receive a fixed amount of funding each year, which has not been adjusted for inflation since its inception in 1996. Because states often use TANF as a funding source for other budgetary shortfalls, they were able to divert the program’s fixed funding to other needs before and during the Recession rather than directing them to assist the growing unemployed population.10

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Food stamps are a very easy target to go after when expressing opposition to social safety nets. They're often referred to as "handouts".

 

Conservative media outlets such as Breitbart love to report on any story regarding food stamp abuse, as an attempt to shine a negative light on its existence. 

 

But the stats show that food stamp fraud isn't very common at all actually, though some outlets will go out of their way to ignore that reality. Fox News was even caught showing false data regarding food stamp fraud, and later had to retract and apologize. 

 

Despite the facts, opposition is still strong, and the argument over the funding of food stamps has seen itself go from an economic argument, to an emotional and morals driven argument.

 

To me the moral case for food stamps seems pretty straightforward to me. People shouldn't go hungry just because they don't have money, especially households with children, which happen to be about 85 percent of the households who receive SNAP benefits. 

 

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The Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP, previously food stamps) is an important public-private partnership that helps families afford a basic diet, generates business for retailers, and boosts local economies.  SNAP accounts for about 10 percent of the food that U.S. families buy for their homes. 

 

Participants purchase groceries with SNAP benefits at about 260,000 retailers — from superstores to farmers’ markets — across the country.  By increasing low-income households’ purchasing power so they can buy the food they need directly from stores, SNAP integrates economically marginalized households with almost no government administrative overhead resulting from food distribution.

 

SNAP redemptions are a meaningful share of food purchases in our country.  In fiscal year 2017, SNAP participants redeemed about $63 billion in SNAP benefits for food purchases, supporting retailers of every size.  In 2014 (the most current year available), the roughly $70 billion in SNAP redemptions accounted for approximately 10 percent of expenditures on food for consumption at home.[1]

 

SNAP generates business for retailers of all types and sizes.  SNAP retailers comprise big- box superstores and major national grocery chains as well as small specialty stores, convenience stores, and farmers’ markets.  Between 2013 and 2017, the number of authorized retailers increased by 4 percent.[2]  Recent growth in the number of participating retailers has made SNAP an integral part of the food retail industry.

FIGURE 1
Over 80% of SNAP Benefits Are Used at Larger Stores

The large number and wide variety of authorized retailers also helps ensure that low-income families across the country can regularly access a store where they can redeem their SNAP dollars for food.  Though SNAP participants in some areas of the country, particularly rural areas, still have inadequate access to food stores, most can easily redeem their benefits.  Nationally, there are an average of about 79 SNAP authorized retailers per 100,000 people.[3]

SNAP provides important support for small business.  While over 80 percent of SNAP benefits are used at larger stores, including superstores (like Wal-Mart, Target, and Costco) and supermarkets (like Food Lion and Safeway), the vast majority of SNAP authorized retailers — about 80 percent — are smaller stores.[4]  These include many locally owned businesses, such as private groceries, convenience stores, dairies, butchers, bakeries, and farm stands.  For these small businesses, SNAP is an important revenue source — particularly in high-poverty areas, where SNAP purchases can account for a significant share of a retailer’s total sales.

SNAP increases both food and non-food purchases.  Households participating in SNAP spend more on food.[5]  But SNAP also increases their overall purchasing power, allowing them to meet other basic needs.  By providing more resources for food, SNAP helps free up cash for poor households to buy other essential items, like diapers and medication.  As a result, retail sales increase, benefiting stores that sell both food and non-food items.

SNAP helps local economies.  Because most households redeem their monthly SNAP benefits quickly and because the program helps struggling households purchase adequate food, SNAP is one of the most effective forms of economic stimulus during a downturn.  Economists estimate that, in a weak economy, every SNAP dollar that households redeem expands the economy by about $1.70.[6]  In 2009, the peak year of the last recession, $50 billion in SNAP benefits were spent in local stores, generating about $85 billion in local economic activity, even as the overall economy was struggling.

SNAP’s consistent standards create efficiencies for business.  In order to accept SNAP benefits, retailers must apply and meet certain standards.  Qualifying stores must sell food for preparation and consumption at home and meet one of two criteria.  A retailer must either (1) continuously stock a certain variety of staple foods, including perishables, or (2) have more than 50 percent of its gross retail sales from staple foods.  While most authorized stores qualify by meeting the first criterion, specialty stores, like butcher shops, are often authorized under the second.  The USDA’s Food and Nutrition Service carefully and continuously monitors retailers in order to protect the program and promote integrity and compliance among retailers.[7]

SNAP also has national standards about which products can be purchased with SNAP, and how benefits are redeemed.  This uniformity promotes efficiency and limits costs for the private sector.  Retailers with multiple locations and presence in multiple states can employ consistent operational practices and equipment across their stores.  The Food Marketing Institute (FMI), a trade association that represents food retailers and wholesalers, recognizes that this benefits the industry and customers alike.  As FMI Chief Public Policy Officer and Senior Vice President Jennifer Hatcher recently told Congress:

We now have a national program with nationally-approved products that is consistent from state to state.  The evolution to 100% interoperable electronic transactions … has made the program much easier for operations and compliance and much simpler for customers.… [T]he efficiencies and simplicity of the administrative function of SNAP that have achieved easier operation and compliance and a simpler customer experience have happened because of the consistency of a national program.[8]

 

 

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10 minutes ago, merrill said:

Food stamps are a very easy target to go after when expressing opposition to social safety nets. They're often referred to as "handouts".

 

Conservative media outlets such as Breitbart love to report on any story regarding food stamp abuse, as an attempt to shine a negative light on its existence. 

 

But the stats show that food stamp fraud isn't very common at all actually, though some outlets will go out of their way to ignore that reality. Fox News was even caught showing false data regarding food stamp fraud, and later had to retract and apologize. 

 

Despite the facts, opposition is still strong, and the argument over the funding of food stamps has seen itself go from an economic argument, to an emotional and morals driven argument.

 

To me the moral case for food stamps seems pretty straightforward to me. People shouldn't go hungry just because they don't have money, especially households with children, which happen to be about 85 percent of the households who receive SNAP benefits. 


 

Yes. Being hungry is great motivation to get off your ass and do something with your life aside from drugs and alcohol. 

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