Republicans are coming for nutrition assistance for hungry families. There can be no doubt: they’ve told us and told us and told us. They’ve told us that they want to go after families with children on the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program and they’ve told us that the problem with the program is people who don’t work—even though it has some serious work requirements. Lies are at the core of the Republican story about food stamps. They may be telling us what they want to do to the program, but nothing they say about what it is and what it does is true. So let’s get a little food stamp truth in here.
Nutrition assistance means healthy babies:
Pregnant mothers with SNAP access have improved birth outcomes.
SNAP keeps people from going hungry:
SNAP reduces the overall prevalence of food insecurity by as much as 30 percent, and is even more effective among the most vulnerable, such as children and those with “very low food security,” that is, when one or more household members have to skip meals or otherwise eat less during the year due to lack of money. The largest and most rigorous examination of the relationship between SNAP participation and food security found that food insecurity among children fell by roughly a third after their families received SNAP benefits for six months.
Food stamps mean lower healthcare costs:
Adults in SNAP incur $1,400—nearly 25 percent less—less per year in medical costs than low-income non-participants.
But better health care:
Elder SNAP participants forgo medicine due to costs less than similar non-participants.
And better long-term health:
This is what Republicans want us to believe is costing the U.S. too much money to benefit lazy people who just don’t want to work. Children growing into healthier, more educated adults. Adults with lower healthcare costs. Children not going to bed hungry at night.
That’s what Republicans are attacking and want to cut.