Nov 30, 2019

Trump's proposed changes to food stamps could affect 3.7 million Americans

In this image, Trump speaks at a podium.

Photo: Olivier Douliery/AFP via Getty Images

Roughly 3.7 million fewer people could receive food assistance through the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) if the Trump administration's proposed restrictions are implemented, a recent Urban Institute study found.

What they found: Households in California, Florida, Illinois, Michigan, New York, Pennsylvania, Washington state and Texas would be disproportionately affected by the restrictions.

  • SNAP participation would fall by at least 15% in 13 states, and 24% in Washington, D.C.
  • Almost 75% of households with gross income above 130% of the federal poverty guidelines would lose SNAP eligibility.
  • Roughly half a million households with children would lose eligibility, and 1.1 million would incur an average of $28 less in benefits.
  • 1 million households with children would have an average of $13 more in benefits.

What they're saying: A bipartisan coalition of 70 mayors stated their "strong opposition" to the administration's proposed restrictions in August, warning changes to the program would harm local and regional economies.

Background: The administration has proposed three core SNAP restrictions:

  1. Limiting states' ability to request time limit waivers for able-bodied adults.
  2. Tightening residents' ability to become automatically eligible for food stamps if they receive benefits from another federal program.
  3. Setting uniform standard utility allowances.

Methodology: The study measured the possible effects of Trump's proposed regulations on households from 2018.

Go deeper: Trump administration plans to take 3M Americans off food stamps

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