Thursday, April 16, 2015
More on SNAP in St. Lawrence County
A few years ago, I took part in a SNAP Challenge program, where I tried to feed my family on $4 per day. Even though I have a car and the ability to shop the sales at different stores, a fully equipped kitchen, and I know how to cook from scratch, it was nearly impossible to do. Lots of cheap food and lots of the same thing over and over. If you don't believe me, you should try it yourelf!
So one improvement that could be made to SNAP, and this would have to happen at the federal level is to make the benefit levels more realistic.
Another concern that arose for me from looking at the data was that while 19.6% of the County's population lives at or below the federal poverty level, only 15.6% of the population is using SNAP benefits. Since SNAP benefits are often available to people with incomes up to 200% of poverty, that's a lot of people who likely need this assistance but are not receiving it.
I'm looking for information about who is already working on these issues and ideas about how we reach people in need who are not currently receiving SNAP. Feel free to contact me with ideas or information!