US to cut food stamp benefits

Source:Xinhua Published: 2019/12/5 13:58:47

U.S. President Donald Trump speaks to reporters before leaving the White House in Washington D.C., the United States, on Dec. 2, 2019. U.S. President Donald Trump slammed an ongoing impeachment inquiry into him on Monday, as the next phase of the high-stake investigation was drawing near. (Photo by Ting Shen/Xinhua)

The Trump administration announced on Wednesday that it is tightening automatic eligibility requirements for the federal food stamp program.

One of the proposed rules in the move is to revise the work requirements for those who receive food assistance.

The U.S. Agriculture Department said the move would close "a loophole" in the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP), the official name of the food stamp program.

The Department said Wednesday that tightening the work requirements would save roughly 5.5 billion U.S. dollars over five years, cutting benefits for roughly 688,000 SNAP recipients.

Agriculture Secretary Sonny Perdue said the rule will help move people "from welfare to work," noting that they "want to encourage people by giving them a helping hand, but not an infinitely giving hand."

House Speaker Nancy Pelosi called SNAP the nation's "most effective anti-hunger initiative."

The Trump administration's new rule "does nothing to close the income inequality gap and instead threatens to take food away from millions of Americans," she said in a statement.

The new policy is expected to be published in the Federal Register on Wednesday and is open for public comment for 60 days.

Posted in: AMERICAS

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