Cutbacks coming to food stamp program - New York News

Cutbacks coming to food stamp program

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ATLANTA -

Millions of American families will have to adjust their grocery budgets due to scheduled cutbacks to the food stamps program.

The U.S. Department of Agriculture says the average monthly benefit is about $275 per household, but that will be cut significantly beginning Nov. 1.

Deneen Upshaw is bracing herself for the cuts.

"That Food Stamp card helps me to feed my family, because if I didn't have it, Lord knows where we would be," Upshaw said.

Upshaw said she's disabled and is responsible for feeding the many mouths in her large family.

"Altogether, I feed nine people off of $468 a month," Upshaw said.

The USDA says the average family of four who relies on food stamps will lose about $36 a month.

 "We'll have less food available because more people will be coming here to get emergency food," said Elisabeth Omilami, the president and CEO of Hosea Feed the Hungry and Homeless.

Omilami says for families that struggle just to survive, losing $36 a month in grocery money is devastating. She also says her father, who began the non-profit organization 42 years ago would be moved to act.

"He probably would have called a press conference and called a march or called a strike or done something," Omilami said.

Upshaw just hopes the nation's policymakers remember who actually benefits from the food stamp program.

"We ask that Congress not touch our benefits because we need our benefits. Our benefits are there to feed our family," Upshaw said.
    
According to the USDA, nearly 48 million Americans rely on the food stamp program to eat.

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