CONGRESSWOMAN KELLY VOTES TO PROTECT SUPPLEMENTAL NUTRITION ASSISTANCE PROGRAM FROM DRASTIC CUTS
WASHINGTON, DC – Congresswoman Robin Kelly successfully voted today to protect more than 2 million Illinois residents who rely on the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) from a proposed $20 billion in cuts to the program, the nation’s most important anti-hunger initiative. The cuts were included in H.R. 1947, the Federal Agriculture Reform and Risk Management Act of 2013, or Farm Bill.
“The SNAP program is a means of survival for more than 2 million residents in Illinois. The proposed massive cuts would have taken food out of the mouths of our children and made it that much tougher for working families and seniors to meet their basic food needs,” Rep. Kelly said. “Today I voted to protect SNAP recipients, who already struggle to put food on the table, from being pushed even further into hunger. I look forward to working with my colleagues to pass a Farm Bill that supports our farmers while also protecting the nation’s vital food safety net.”
Prior to the vote, Congresswoman Kelly, along with more than two dozen of her Democratic House colleagues, participated in the SNAP Challenge, in which members lived on just $4.50 per day – the average SNAP benefit – to draw attention to the potential cuts as well as to demonstrate the tight food budget of the typical SNAP recipient. Congresswoman Kelly spoke today on the House floor about the challenge and the need to protect SNAP funding. Video of her remarks can be viewed here: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=xbw3af00Tpw.
In Illinois, 88 percent of households receiving SNAP have income below the poverty line, according to the Center on Budget and Policy Priorities. Additionally, nearly half of those who receive SNAP benefits in Illinois are children, according to the Center.