On May 29, 2024
Opinions

Save SNAP

Dear Editor,

We have an urgent call to action: to protect 3SquaresVT/SNAP benefits nationwide for millions of families, including nearly 70,000 people in our state.

In early May, the U.S. Congress began to progress on Farm Bill negotiations again. Just a day apart, the chairs of the House and Senate Agriculture committees released their respective Farm Bill frameworks. The result? Competing visions for addressing hunger. 

Senate Agriculture Committee Chair Stabenow’s framework would protect and strengthen SNAP and other Title IV programs, while House Agriculture Committee Chair Thompson’s would severely compromise the integrity and effectiveness of SNAP, which would also impact farmers’ market programs, and food bank programs. He’s proposed to put an end to science-based updates to the Thrifty Food Plan—on which SNAP benefits are based. This would cut SNAP by $30 billion over several years, and impact every single person who taps into SNAP. This is unacceptable.

Chair Thompson’s proposal to regress the Thrifty Food Plan won’t just impact SNAP, it will also have harmful impacts on the effectiveness of food bank programs like The Emergency Food Assistance Program (TEFAP), and impact every low-income individual and family who relies on SNAP and food pantries to put food on the table.

Chair Thompson’s proposal would return us to the days when USDA is not allowed to ensure responsive SNAP benefits, as modest as they are (at just $2 per meal per day). Benefits would fall further and further behind in value every year. That means the SNAP program wouldn’t provide low-income people, working families, older adults, and others with the adequate benefits needed to ensure access to a healthy and realistic diet.

What can you do?

We need Congresswoman Balint to strongly oppose these proposed cuts coming from the U.S. House Ag Committee — and we need your help to make sure she does!

Please share any stories you have about the impact 3SquaresVT/SNAP has on your community, friends, family, and those you serve. If you are writing on behalf of an organization, please email to say that.

Please join us in taking action to protect SNAP benefits. We need to ensure that every Vermonter has meaningful and adequate support to achieve food security. 

Ivy Enoch, South
Burlington

Editor’s note: Enoch works for Hunger Free Vt. 

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