Expand Penn's SNAP Benefits

Expand Penn’s SNAP Benefits

Relief for families who fall within 200% of federal guidelines for income designated to poverty will come this week.

NEW YORK, Pennsylvania – Inflation has driven up the cost of groceries, and families in Pennsylvania are trying to make ends meet.

Relief for families who fall within 200% of federal guidelines for income designated to poverty will come this week.

As of October 1, income limit for applicants Supplemental Nutritional Assistance Program (SNAP) It will expand to cover 420,000 Pennsylvania in more than 174,000 families who will be newly eligible for SNAP and are expected to receive, on average, $63 per month.

Food banks have been at the forefront of the pandemic and during the economic crisis, millions of Americans are now facing. New Hope Ministries owns and operates a food bank that helps hundreds of people. Erica Saunders, CEO of New Hope Ministries, says the expansion is welcomed by all food banks.

“We see dozens if not hundreds of families coming into our pantry and never having to ask for food assistance before just because it has become a much bigger challenge. The new SNAP program gives us another tool to help families fight hunger,” Saunders said.

Part of New Hope Ministries’ mission as a non-profit organization is to combat food insecurity and the problem of hunger. Recently, they received an award from the Central Food Bank of Pennsylvania for their efforts in helping people apply for SNAP benefits.

Saunders said the food bank has seen an increase in people needing food aid. While the families are at the shelter, Saunders said they often ask people about their SNAP and WIC eligibility to make sure they know resources are available.

“Federal guidelines on poverty and benefits that people were receiving haven’t changed or that assistance has not gone up,” Saunders said. “So we have a lot of people who are facing food insecurity right now, and making a whole group of people across Pennsylvania eligible to receive this particular food assistance will help make sure that kids don’t go hungry at night.”

FOX43 has been able to contact a senior citizen who says she was forced into retirement due to medical issues and is now using SNAP to make ends meet.

Juanita Luis, a SNAP recipient, says the cost of groceries and the economy make her feel like she’s in a survival mode.

“You have to choose between whether you’re going to pay for your medicines, even if it’s just a joint payment, or if you go to buy food or if… you have to rob Peter to pay Paul,” Lewis said.

She added, “With SNAP so much more convenient for me now, I don’t have to worry about paper products or cleaning products, and right now, a lot of food banks help you with that.”

BBCE is a policy that gives states, including Pennsylvania, the flexibility to set appropriate income thresholds and extend SNAP benefits to low-income families and individuals who may struggle to afford food.

With this change, the monthly household income limits for all families eligible for SNAP are as follows:

Family size 200% FPIG

1,266 USD

2 3,052 dollars

3 $3,840

4 4,626 dollars

5 5,412 dollars

6 6200 dollars

7 $6,986

$8,772

9 8,560 dollars

10 9,348 dollars

Each additional member $788

Lewis said no one should be shy about asking for help, and if someone else needed help passing on information.

“A lot of times you have this pride of you where you don’t want to do it but you have to do it because everyone… you don’t always want to ask family or friends for money or food or something like that I took advantage of the food bank and now it’s banks The food is fantastic,” said Lewis.

SNAP applications and other public assistance programs can be submitted online at www.compass.state.pa.us.

Download the FOX43 app here.

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