Sen. Carlucci asks community to donate goods to help alleviate burden from SNAP changes
The Trump administration is scaling back food stamp benefits across the Hudson Valley and the nation.
Local nonprofit food pantries say that future cuts to the federal SNAP program means an increase demand for food that they are not prepared to meet.
More than 700,000 people across the United States are set to lose access to food stamps next year.
The rollbacks to the federal program would require states to mandate work requirements for able-bodied adults without children.
This comes as the Trump administration argues the economy has gotten much stronger and the need for food stamps has gone down.
The federal government projects to save around $5.5 billion through the plan.
Leaders at People to People in Nanuet - Rockland County's largest food provider - are getting prepared.
"Every single time federal safety net programs are cut, we are called upon to fill that gap," says People to People CEO Diane Serratore.
The nonprofit currently helps feed 4,000 food insecure people every month.
"We don't turn anybody away. If you come to People to People and tell us you're hungry, we will help you but we need the financial resources for that. Once SNAP is cut we know we'll see increases," says Serratore.
State Sen. David Carlucci is calling on Rockland residents to donate non-perishable goods as a short-term fix to help a long-term problem.
"We have to do what we can to make sure our food pantries are up and running and that residents have access to these food pantries." he says.
The federal Agricultural Department is also considering a proposal that would change eligibility requirements impacting one in five families on SNAP benefits.
The cuts to the program are expected to take place in April 2020.