Act now to fight change to SNAP threatening to push thousands into hunger

Written by: Stephanie Perez-Carrillo
Date Posted: August 2, 2019

This month, the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) released a new rule that could hurt approximately 90,000 Coloradans annually, including families with kids, who use the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) to help put food on the table.

The rule, which was announced just last week, will make it harder for states to automatically enroll people in SNAP who qualify for certain other benefits, but who would otherwise be ineligible because they earn slightly too much income to qualify under federal SNAP guidelines—a policy known as “broad-based categorical eligibility (BBCE).”

This is a big problem for children in households that receive SNAP, because they are automatically eligible for free school meals without having to complete a separate application, a process known as direct certification. Without BBCE, children whose families lose SNAP when their incomes rise above the program threshold would also lose this automatic link to free school meals.

We know that BBCE is highly effective because it supports working families and mitigates the impacts of the cliff effect when families make too much to qualify for programs. The BBCE process also simplifies SNAP administration and reduces the complexity of the SNAP application process for states and households that qualify. Join us in opposing this harmful proposed rule!

ACT NOW: The federal government must review public comments on this proposal. Please submit a comment to voice your opposition. We ask that you modify the language in the template comment to reflect your own thoughts, because the federal government only needs to respond to unique comments.

The administration is requesting comments on the proposal until Sept. 23. Here is how you can speak up for children and families:

  • Step 1: Use the template comments available hereto create your comments.
  • Step 2: Click hereto submit your comments.
  • Step 3: Enter your information and complete the form, then click “Submit Comment.”

Spread the word on social media — especially during the tweet storm next Wednesday, Aug. 7, from 3 p.m. to 4 p.m. Eastern. We’ll be using #HandsOffSNAP and #ProtectSNAP on social media. Join the tweet storm next Wednesday to help us make those hashtags trend!

Read more about the proposed rule from our national partners at the Food Research Action Center (FRAC). If you have any questions about this issue or would like support in submitting comments, please feel free to reach out to me at stephanie@coloradokids.org.

Stephanie Perez-Carrillo

About Stephanie Perez-Carrillo

Stephanie works as a Policy Analyst for the Colorado Children’s Campaign. Prior to joining the Children’s Campaign, she worked as a Public Policy Fellow at The Women’s Foundation of Colorado – where she found her love and passion for policy work. Before diving into the policy world, Stephanie served as a Teach for America Corps Member in South Carolina, teaching high school and middle school math. Early on while obtaining her degree in Marketing from Florida International University, she worked in health care as a Patient Advocate and Unit Secretary. When she is not working, you can typically find her at a coffee shop, hanging out with friends, or engaging in some type of outdoor activity.