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Trump Administration To Tighten SNAP Work Requirement46:52
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In this Friday, March 17, 2017 photo a sign advertises a program that allows food stamp recipients to use their EBT cards to shop at a farmer's market in Topsham, Maine. (Robert F. Bukaty/AP)
In this Friday, March 17, 2017 photo a sign advertises a program that allows food stamp recipients to use their EBT cards to shop at a farmer's market in Topsham, Maine. (Robert F. Bukaty/AP)

A Trump administration proposal could cause millions of low-income people to lose access to food stamps in the long run.

Guests

Elaine Waxman, senior fellow in the Income and Benefits Policy Center at the Urban Institute. Her areas of focus include food insecurity, nutrition and the food assistance safety net, among others. (@urbaninstitute)

Jonathan Ingram, vice president of policy and research at the Foundation for Government Accountability, a nonprofit focused on welfare and health care overhaul. (@ingramlaw)

Mag Strittmatter, president and CEO of Roadrunner Foodbank of New Mexico. (@RoadrunnerFdBnk)

From The Reading List

Wall Street Journal: "Trump Administration to Stiffen Food-Stamp Work Requirement" — "The Trump administration is set to tighten work requirements for recipients of federal food aid, potentially rendering hundreds of thousands of people ineligible for the program by mid-2020.

"The administration said Wednesday that it had completed a new rule curbing states’ ability to shield adults without dependents from federal work requirements tied to receiving assistance through the program formerly administered via food stamps. Officials say the rule, which takes effect April 1, 2020, will save the government billions of dollars and encourage more people to work at a time when jobless rates are near a 50-year low.

"The rule is the first to take effect among several Trump administration proposals to restrict access to the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program, or SNAP, which provides aid to 36.4 million people. The U.S. Department of Agriculture, which oversees the program, separately has proposed tightening eligibility requirements for low-income households and changing how utility costs factor into eligibility."

Bloomberg: "Trump Administration Moves to End Food Stamps for 700,000" — "The Trump administration announced a plan Wednesday to end food-stamp benefits for about 700,000 Americans, issuing a new regulation that makes it harder for states to gain waivers from a requirement that beneficiaries work or participate in a vocational training program.

"Agriculture Secretary Sonny Perdue said the new rule will move more food-stamp recipients 'toward self-sufficiency and into employment.'

"Conservatives have long sought cuts in the federal food assistance program for the poor. House Republicans tried to impose similar restrictions last year when Congress renewed the program but were rebuffed in the Senate.

"The work requirement covers 'able-bodied' recipients. A U.S. Department of Agriculture spokeswoman said it doesn’t apply to recipients who are over 50, disabled or pregnant, or anyone with a child under 18."

Esquire: "New Trump Administration Rules Could Cost 3.7 Million Americans Their Food Stamps" — "A new study of proposed Trump administration changes to the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program, or SNAP, found that they could result in 3.7 million Americans losing their food stamps.

"The report from the non-profit Urban Institute examined the effects of three proposed changes to the program, which would tighten work requirements and deductions for housings costs, and alter automatic enrollment protocols in 40 states. Had the proposed changes been in effect last year, the study found, 3.7 million Americans and over two million households would have lost their food stamps, while millions of others would have seen a reduction in their benefits. Nearly a million students would have lost their automatic free or discounted school meals.

"'What we found is that overall the three proposed changes would reduce the number of households participating in SNAP by about 11 percent if this was implemented in 2018,' the Urban Institute’s Laura Wheaton told NBC News. 'It’s about a 9.4 percent reduction in the number of people participating and about an 8 percent reduction in overall benefits.' "

This program aired on December 5, 2019.

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