White House plan would change food SNAP benefits for low-income people

CARRBORO, NC (WTVD) -- On Monday, the Trump Administration proposed changing SNAP benefits - the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program for individuals and families. The change affects more than 80 percent of recipients, who receive more than $90 a month in SNAP benefits.

Instead of getting all their money to buy food, the government would supplement with issuing food.

The items would include shelf-stable milk, juice, grains, cereals, pasta, peanut butter, beans and canned meat, fruits and vegetables.

The Trump administration said it wants to cut costs and that reducing the amount of money funding the SNAP program would save the country $17 billion next year, and billions more over a decade.

But this idea of the government handing out non-perishable food instead of money has raised some concerns among food banks, who supply food to low-income families and children in need.

"There may be less or no ability to handle allergies and dietary preferences, as a result, food waste. And with additional food waste, increased families may need additional food as well," said Ashton Tippins, the executive director with the TABLE in Carrboro.

Her organization serves more than 600 children a week.

Tippins is concerned the need for food could grow if the types of food given to families by the government are not what they need.

Right now, this is just a budget proposal that would have to be approved by Congress.
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