“I did not come to Congress to kick the most vulnerable Americans off of food assistance” posted Democratic Lehigh Valley congressman Matt Cartwright. His statement follows the radical changes that seek to cut funding to the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program.
The cuts will have a direct impact on the money going into food stamp support for Pennsylvanians that qualify for heating assistance. These food stamps have been a crucial last-resort benefit for low-income families.
Eugenia Emert of the Catasauqua Food Bank said that “we are seeing more people coming earlier and trying to get food because their food money doesn’t last.” Other organizations and food banks echoed similar statements. “We’re definitely running low on the food,” said Carolyn Engle, program manager at ProJeCT Easton.
Conservatives have been advocating for cutting SNAP’s funding by as much as $40 billion, however only recently has a House approved plan to trim $8 billion from the plan made it’s way through.
Advocates of cutting SNAP suggest that charities may be able to fill the gap, however the Coalition Against Hunger imply the solution isn’t that simple. According to them “food banks and other charities in our state already can’t keep up wit the skyrocketing need, and they certainly can’t fill the $136 million gap.”