I grew up in a small town and when folks fell on hard times the community always stepped up and helped them out.
That’s what it means to be a progressive—we look out for each other and believe that everyone should have a shot at the American Dream.
SNAP, formerly called “food stamps” is a program built on progressive values. It plays a vital role in keeping families living on the brink from slipping into poverty.
The majority of SNAP recipients are children or elderly — and many work. In fact, without SNAP, the child poverty rate would be nearly 3 percentage points higher.
But House Republicans are now using the 2018 farm bill to push their dangerous ideology built on the lie that people live in poverty because they’re lazy.
The latest House version of the farm bill would impose strict so-called "work requirements" on millions of low-income Americans receiving food stamps. This is a horrible idea—especially for people living in small towns and rural communities.3
Many small towns across America have been hollowed out by the Republican agenda for the 1%. And after big business shipped jobs overseas their local labor force was left out of work.
Requiring people to find 20 hours a week of work before they receive food stamps when there aren't enough jobs to go around isn't just cruel, it's nonsensical.
Not only is SNAP a safety net for families who have fallen on hard times, the program can be a powerful source of economic stimulus for farmers and small town businesses. USDA research shows each $1 billion of retail generated by SNAP creates $340 million in farm production, $110 million in farm value-added, and 3,300 farm jobs.4