The Center on Budget and Policy Priorities (CBPP) released a new report on Jan 5, 2015 on the return of the three month time limit on SNAP benefits for unemployed adults aged 18-50 who aren't disabled or raising minor children (often referred to as ABAWDs - Able-Bodied Adults Without Dependents). Roughly 1 million of the nation's poorest people will be cut off SNAP over the course of 2016, due to the return in many areas of a three-month limit. These individuals will lose their food assistance benefits after three months regardless of how hard they are looking for work. This change represents a significant change and challenge for SNAP and will cause real hardship for individuals subject to the time limit. Food banks, state officials, other service providers and advocates will need to prepare for the return of the time limit and its impact on these individuals and their communities.
The paper reviews the time limit policy, its impact, the affected population and key issues for consideration as the time limit comes back into effect in many parts of the country.
- You can find the paper here: Approximately 1 Million Unemployed Childless Adults Will Lose SNAP Benefits in 2016 as States Waivers Expire.
CBPP plans to host a webinar to review the time limit very soon and we will share registration information when it is available.
Impact on Feeding America Network
Jobs are the best solution to hunger and poverty and we support efforts to strengthen and expand job training and placement programs for people on SNAP to help them move out of poverty. While national unemployment has dropped significantly, our economy has yet to fully recover from the impact of the Great Recession. Jobs remain unavailable to many low income people who would like to work, particularly those with limited skills and education. As the Center's report illustrates, most states do not guarantee placement in work or training program and the need for work or training programs significantly outstrips the availability of slots. Unfortunately, as a result many childless unemployed adults will lose their SNAP benefits. This will cause hardship for those impacted, as well as increase pressure on food banks and emergency food programs, many of whom are already facing sustained high demand in the wake of the recession.
As you may have heard, the House and Senate are both working on passing budget resolutions that would balance the budget in 10 years. While the budget resolutions alone are non-binding, we are concerned that Congress will use the process to pass actual legislation that would make deep cuts or harmful structural changes—including block granting—to hunger-relief programs, particularly SNAP. For background and updates on the budget process, click here and follow this page.
We believe it is important to send a strong message in support of these key programs up front and are coordinating a call-in day with our anti-hunger partners on Tuesday, March 24. We need your help to make it a success.
We want to generate as many calls as possible from food bank staff, agencies, and your local networks to show there is strong constituent support for these programs.
On March 24 we will send an action alert to start the call-in day. You can use the sample action alert below to mobilize your own local networks. For more information on the budget process, including the latest details and timeline, please click here and follow this page.
Sample Action Alert
This week, the House and Senate are expected to vote on budget resolutions that would attempt to balance the budget in 10 years.
While these resolutions are non-binding, we are concerned that they will be used to draft legislation that would balance the budget on the backs on low-income Americans by cutting the hunger-relief programs that advance our mission.
We believe it is necessary to send a strong message early in this process and let them know that cutting programs that our clients rely on is the wrong way to balance the budget. Help us generate phone calls to the House and Senate with a clear message—protect the programs that help us fight hunger!
Call Congress Today!
Calling Congress is easy. Here's how:
Just dial our toll free number, (888) 398-8702, listen to the pre-recorded message and enter your zip code when prompted.
Once you are connected to your first Member of Congress, state that you are a constituent, and give your name and the town you are calling from.
Let them know you are calling about the budget and deliver this important message:
As your constituent and supporter/employee of Facing Hunger Foodbank, I am calling you today to ask you to vote against any efforts to cut or block-grant hunger-relief programs like SNAP when you consider the budget resolution. SNAP benefits have already been cut twice in the last two years. Our clients rely on these programs, and our food bank will be unable to meet the need in our community if these programs are cut. Please find a more responsible way to balance the budget.
Be sure to dial back in and speak with both of your senators and your representative.