Letter: Children and hunger
For some people, food banks are their family’s main grocery store. I was reading the ensuing debate on your website about food stamps following a November article in the Republican. In the article, Sarah Gibbons, a spokeswoman for the Western Mass Food Bank said, “Now emergency food is a normal source of groceries for some people.’’ Charitable organizations would need a $50,000 food bank budget to offset a cut to SNAP (food stamps) in their community.
There are those of us that believe SNAP (Supplemental Nutritional Assistance Program) is essential for families to be fed and it should be protected. But lawmakers in Washington may allow significant cuts to SNAP to the tune of $10M — that means 9,258,000 kids will go hungry. The well-being of children is at stake here. I can sympathize with the pipe dream that by not giving families “handouts” we give them the opportunity to pull themselves up by their bootstraps and “win” at the American Dream. But, in reality, all we are doing is giving parents the opportunity to make the heartbreaking choices between paying for rent, a coat for winter, or groceries for their families? With every winner, there is a loser. With 47 percent of every SNAP dollar going to children … no one really wins if children go hungry.