01.24.08

Leahy Presses To Add Food Stamp Component To Stimulus Package

WASHINGTON (Thursday, January 24) – In a letter to the Senate’s leadership Thursday, Senator Patrick Leahy (D-Vt.) urged inclusion of a temporary expansion of Food Stamp benefits in the economic stimulus package now under development in Congress. 

“A stimulus package provides an opportunity to give a boost to the economy and at the same time deliver meaningful assistance to those that will be most impacted by a possible economic downturn,” Leahy wrote. 

Food Stamps are a key element of the safety net for low-income Americans, providing monthly benefits to help individuals and families afford to buy food for the dinner table.  More than 25 million Americans receive some level of Food Stamp help, and more than 10 percent of the U.S. population is classified as lacking food security.  In Vermont, 53,000 people are enrolled in the program. 

Leahy, long a leader on Food Stamp and anti-hunger policy, is the most senior member of either party on the Agriculture Committee and a former chairman of the panel.  

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