More than 420,000 Connecticut residents – or 12 percent of the state’s population – now have less money to feed their families. They are part of the 47 million Americans who are seeing their SNAP (food stamp) benefits cut on November 1, due to the end of the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act that passed four years ago.
In Connecticut, that means 1.4 million meals lost each month, or 17 million meals missing from the dinner plates of low-income families each year. Wihin those families are 149,000 children, as well as 102,000 elderly and disabled residents.
The cut means that a family of four will lose $36 a month from their maximum monthly benefit. While this may not seem like a lot, $36 provides much more than you think. It means several days’ worth of meals for a struggling family and is the equivalent of:
- One gallon of low-fat milk; a box of corn flakes, eight bananas, a loaf of bread, some deli ham, some deli cheese, two boxes of spaghetti, spaghetti sauce, some ground beef, some chicken breast and four potatoes.
Over the course of a year, that family would have $432 less to spend on food.
We expect the cuts will result in an increased need for food assistance at food pantries and soup kitchens across the state that are already stretched. At Connecticut Food Bank, and throughout the Feeding America network, we are doing everything we can to prepare for this certain influx.
These cuts could not come at a worse time, as we approach the holiday season. You can help us meet the demand as these cuts will impact an already strained charitable emergency food system that is already struggling to keep up with demand. Learn how by visiting our Donate page.
Helping our neighbors in need is a fundamental American value, and fighting hunger is a public-private partnership. We need a strong charitable system AND a strong federal anti-hunger safety net. Working together, individuals, charities, business and government can solve hunger.