Every day in America, 47 million Americans, including more than 800,000 Wisconsinites, use food stamps - a budget of $4.50 for food per day - to afford their daily meals.
Starting Thursday, June 13, U.S. Rep Mark Pocan (WI-02) will stand in solidarity with all Wisconsinites who rely on this critical safety net and participate in a the “SNAP Challenge” by living off a food stamp budget for one week.
The average nationwide weekly benefit for someone on the Supplemental Nutrition Assistant Program (SNAP) is $31.50 a week, which breaks down to $4.50 per day and $1.50 per meal.
Approximately one in seven families in the United States are in the program, and almost half of SNAP benefits go to children. But Congressional Republicans are currently pursuing $20.5 billion in cuts to SNAP, which would kick two million Americans out of the program and mean that 210,000 children in low-income families would lose access to free school meals.
“Sometimes the best way to understand another person’s challenges is to spend some time walking in their shoes. While I will live on $4.50 a day for seven days, we cannot forget that millions of families survive on this and less every day, every week, for months at a time,” Pocan said. “For these Americans, millions of whom are children, SNAP is an indispensable lifeline. We need to protect this critical program from the Republicans’ reckless cuts that would leave millions without adequate resources to feed themselves and their families.”
Pocan will be participating in the challenge from Thursday, June 13- Wednesday, June 19. He will be regularly sharing photos and thoughts throughout the week on his Facebook and Twitter pages.
On Wednesday, June 12, Pocan will go grocery shopping with other members of Congress participating in the SNAP Challenge.