Policy

Missouri Might Pay SNAP Recipients To Eat Their Veggies

Missouri Might Pay SNAP Recipients To Eat Their Veggies

It isn’t often that policy changes to the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) – also known as food stamps – are positive developments, which is why a proposed Missouri bill to reimburse recipients for purchasing healthy food is so stunning. In recent months, SNAP has gotten a number of bad blows. From the expiration of temporary stimulus funds to additional cuts through the recently passed Farm Bill, beneficiaries of this critical anti-poverty program have too […]

Read more ›
February 25, 2014 at 8:00 amPolicy

Want to Cut the Cost of Food Stamps? Do Nothing!

Want to Cut the Cost of Food Stamps? Do Nothing!

Fiscal conservatives, rejoice! It turns out the best way to control the cost of the food stamps is to simply do nothing. In a recent report, the Center on Budget and Policy Priorities found that, after taking into account the automatic cuts to food stamps that took effect November 1, in just a few short years the cost of the program will mirror that of the late 1990s. The graph below shows the projected trajectory […]

Read more ›
November 21, 2013 at 8:47 amPolicy

The Fate of Washington State’s I-522 and GMO Labeling

The Fate of Washington State’s I-522 and GMO Labeling

GMO labeling is at the forefront of current political food activism. In recent elections two major bills manifested that would bring more power to the hands of the consumer, California prop 37 and more recently Washington State’s I-522. Both were defeated in last-minute opinion shifts based on advertising campaigns with budgets in the tens of millions. Often times the focus of such acts and campaigns center around the conglomerates that monopolize the food industry (notably […]

Read more ›
November 15, 2013 at 9:38 amPolicy

How to Fight for Food Reform in Bill de Blasio’s NYC

NYC's new Mayor, Bill de Blasio
(photo: Kevin Chase)

In case you missed it, New York City recently got a new mayor by the name of Bill de Blasio. He was elected with 73% of the vote, a clear sign that many New Yorkers are ready for a more progressive government. His platform ran on decreasing inequality – of wealth, employment, housing, healthcare, and justice – and his time on the City Council attested to those values. Many of the talking points that became […]

Read more ›
November 11, 2013 at 2:07 pmPolicy

Fraud At The USDA? Don’t Blame SNAP

Where has all the SNAP money gone?
[Flickr]

According to a new report from the USDA inspector general, the department paid out $20.3 million more than it should have in 2013. If you’re an avid consumer of conservative news or GOP talking points, you probably think that SNAP payments are responsible for the bulk of this waste. But you’d be wrong. The USDA provides an array of farm subsidies and nutrition assistance, funding for which is determined by the passage of a Farm […]

Read more ›
September 5, 2013 at 1:43 pmPolicy

If Farmville Had a Farmbill

If Farmville Had a Farmbill

Research would tell us that most people are a few generations removed from the farm. This means that it can be more difficult for us to explain what’s happening out here, just because we’re not talking the same language. What if that were to change? Research would also tell us that a vast majority of our society enjoys playing online games, one of which happens to be a farming-based game called, “Farmville.” If you’re reading […]

Read more ›
August 26, 2013 at 12:39 pmPolicy

Hudson Amendment Seeks to Shame SNAP Recipients

[flickr]

Apparently, cutting SNAP benefits simply doesn’t harm the working poor enough. While many are aware of House Republicans’ plans to cut funding for SNAP by $40 billion over ten years – a move that could result in up to 4 million recipients being dropped from the program – few know about a sneaky amendment to the farm bill that was added back in June. According to reports, Rep. Richard Hudson (R-N.C.) sponsored an amendment that […]

Read more ›
August 22, 2013 at 8:03 amPolicy

Pay 68¢ More for Big Mac and We Could Double Fast Food Workers’ Wages

Pay 68¢ More for Big Mac and We Could Double Fast Food Workers’ Wages

This week, fast food workers across America are staging walk-outs from work, demanding that wages rise to $15 an hour. The right-wing media – and their pals in the lucrative fast food lobbying business – are making a full court press to downplay the validity of workers’ demands. While opponents of fair labor standards typically trot out long debunked canards about how increasing the minimum wage kills jobs – an idea that only exists in […]

Read more ›
July 30, 2013 at 9:16 amPolicy

The Last SNAP Standing: Why So Many Still Need Food Stamps

The Last SNAP Standing: Why So Many Still Need Food Stamps

A new report sheds light on why enrollment in the Supplementary Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) has not declined despite a slowly improving job market. More importantly, the report illustrates why SNAP is an essential anti-poverty program. The Center on Budget and Policy Priorities released a report detailing the effects the current economy has on SNAP enrollment. The general gist of the report is that even though the job market is improving, it still remains relatively weak, keeping […]

Read more ›
July 29, 2013 at 2:32 pmPolicy

When Urban Planning Fails, Guerrilla Gardening Is The Only Solution

When Urban Planning Fails, Guerrilla Gardening Is The Only Solution

Despite perhaps best intentions, urban planners in major cities have failed to deliver communities with easy and reliable access to food. Case in point – Ron Finley and guerrilla gardening. A native of South Central Los Angeles, Finley describes the experience of living in a food desert – an urban area with little access to fresh, healthy groceries. Overwhelmed with the state of food access within his community, Finley decided to plant fruits and vegetables in any […]

Read more ›
July 24, 2013 at 1:33 pmPolicy