Stop SNAP work requirements

Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program logoHB 1659, which would expand work requirements on SNAP and cause nearly 100,000 people to lose access to food stamps, went back to the Appropriations Committee yesterday. But even though it is off the table for now, there is a good chance it will come back.

[EDIT 5/2/18: This bill came back out of Appropriations yesterday and was voted on by the full House. It now moves on to the Senate.]

In most cases, SNAP recipients must already work or participate in a training program if they are ages 18-50, non-disabled, and not considered "vulnerable individuals" (one example of a vulnerable individual would be someone living in an area with a high-unemployment rate).   According to the Center on Budget and Policy Priorities, the work rate for people receiving SNAP is and has been growing. More than 80 percent of SNAP households work the year before or after receiving SNAP.

SNAP works to keep children, families, and individuals fed, and to bridge the gap between jobs. It supplements workers who are underemployed, and ensures adults who are unable to work (sometimes due to short-term or chronic illness) can put food on the table.

Take Action:
  • Hunger Free Pennsylvania put together an action alert so you can reach your legislators about SNAP and HB 1659. You can take action here.
  • Maternity Care Coalition also put together a sample script you can use to call your legislators:
    • I'm calling today to ask Representative _____________ to oppose adding work requirements for those receiving food assistance through SNAP. Cutting people from food assistance won't make it easier for them to find work. HB 1659 would cut off SNAP to people who live in high unemployment areas who can’t find jobs. Instead of cutting people off federally-funded SNAP benefits, lawmakers should focus on bringing real jobs to Pennsylvania and creating real opportunities not adding to the bureaucracy. Please vote no on House Bill 1659 when it next comes to a vote. Thank you.
  • Medicaid work requirements are also a concern in Pennsylvania. Learn more and take action here.


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