Statement: House Fails Kids in Today’s Farm Bill Vote
This afternoon, the House of Representatives voted to pass its Farm Bill, the Agriculture and Nutrition Act of 2018 (H.R. 2.). The following statement comes from Bruce Lesley, President of First Focus Campaign for Children:
“With this vote, 213 Representatives voted for a partisan bill that will make it harder for low-income families to put food of the table. This legislation takes the unprecedented step of seizing food assistance from adults who can’t meet burdensome new work requirements even if they have school-aged children. As a result, hundreds of thousands of households with children would see their annual SNAP benefit reduced by an average of $2,000. As if that isn’t bad enough, eligibility changes would force 265,000 children to lose their direct certification for school meals. Not only will this legislation make kids hungrier at home, but at school as well. Even though 80 national child advocacy organizations joined together to clearly oppose this measure, kids came last in this farm bill vote.”
In contrast, the Senate Farm Bill—S.3042—is a bipartisan piece of legislation that recognizes the critical importance of the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program for hard-working families, preserving access and eligibility to the program. First Focus Campaign for Children strongly supports the Senate bill as an alternative to the House measure, and we urge them to continue their bipartisan, good-faith agreement. We also thank the 211 Representatives who voted no on H.R. 2, and urge them to keep fighting for the low-income children and families who depend on SNAP every day.