Report: Nearly half of NM kids impacted by food stamp cuts

Posted at: 08/05/2013 2:36 PM
By: staff

This fall, hundreds of thousands of New Mexico residents could see a cut in their food assistance benefits.

The USDA released data showing 442,000 residents would be impacted when a temporary boost to a supplemental nutrition assistance program, known as SNAP (formerly food stamps), expires this fall. Across the country, an estimated 47 million Americans will see a reduction in their benefits.

According to New Mexico Voices for Children, 42 percent of the state's children are on food stamps. The news comes on the heels of another report by Feeding America that found New Mexico has the highest rate of child hunger in the nation.

When the benefit boost expires on Oct. 31, NM Voices for Children says a family of three would see a reduction of $29 a month, averaging less than $1.40 per person per meal.

“The small increase in SNAP benefits that was included in the federal stimulus bill has helped thousands of struggling families in New Mexico stay afloat during the worst economic crisis since the Great Depression," said Veronica C. García, executive director of New Mexico Voices for Children. "This modest assistance is providing a lifeline to those parents who are struggling to find work, or are working at jobs that do not pay them enough to put food on the table."