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Yesterday, the US House of Representatives voted to cut the Food Stamp Program (SNAP) by $39 billion, which will result in more than 1.5 billion meals lost in fiscal year 2014 alone. (You can find out how your Representative voted here.) The Atlanta Community Food Bank is deeply disappointed by this vote. We know from direct experience that private charity cannot make up for this substantial cut to federal food assistance. We have seen it, in person, over the past decade and particularly during the economic downturn which continues to impact low income Georgia families. The congregations and agencies that partner with us know as well as we do that this vote will mean thousands of Georgians will struggle even harder to feed their families.
It’s now time for the House and Senate conferees and the Administration to work for and produce a Farm Bill that makes sense for struggling Americans. They must produce legislation that does not cut SNAP and that places us on the path to ending hunger in this country. More importantly, they must produce a bill that reflects reality. Those that championed these cuts presented them as a way to help put people back to work, but this assertion rings false. While the unemployment rate in Georgia is still 8.7% and almost 1 million more people are living in poverty in Georgia than in 2000, the largest number of Georgians receiving food stamps are children, seniors and those who have jobs, but still can’t make ends meet.
We want to thank our supporters for all their efforts to advocate and champion on behalf of Georgia families.
The Atlanta Community Food Bank will continue our efforts to work with the members of Congress from Georgia to protect federal anti-hunger programs like SNAP from cuts and harmful policy changes. We will also keep you updated on the status of the bill as it moves forward.
If you are interested in receiving advocacy updates or becoming an advocacy champion, learn more on our Advocacy page.