Trump Administration Eyes Placing Stricter Rules On SNAP

The Trump Administration is reportedly poised to propose a rule restricting states’ ability to provide Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) benefits to childless adults living in high-unemployment areas who are struggling to find a steady job. Hundreds of thousands of unemployed SNAP participants, many of them older Americans, could lose help putting food on the table as a result. “The Trump Administration proposed draconian changes in a key SNAP (food stamp) rule which, if implemented, would cut off basic food assistance for hundreds of thousands of the nation’s poorest and most destitute people,” says Robert Greenstein, president of the Washington, DC-based Center on Budget and Policy Priorities (CBPP). The Trump Administration and House Republican leaders sought but failed to secure the changes as part of the Farm Bill that Congress just passed. The Administration is now proposing to implement, through executive action, what it failed to secure through legislation. “Those affected are SNAP participants ages 18 through 49 who aren’t raising minor children in their homes,” notes Greenstein. “The people whom the rule change would affect are among the poorest of the poor, U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) data show. Their average income is just 33%, or one-third, of the poverty line. “The Administration may portray its proposal as a reasonable 'work requirement,” adds Greenstein. “But most states don’t offer these people any job, training opportunity, or slot in a work program, and people who are 'playing by the rules' and looking hard for a job ar [...]

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12/21/18 5:20 PM

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