These are Heartland Alliance's comments in response to the USDA's Advance Notice of Proposed Rulemaking (ANPRM) regarding the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) Able-Bodied Adults Without Dependents (ABAWD) time limit. As these comments reflect, Heartland Alliance is deeply concerned by attempts to further restrict food assistance to the individuals whom we serve. SNAP is the country's most important anti-hunger program. We strongly support the goal of helping SNAP participants obtain and keep quality jobs that enable them to achieve economic security. However, we believe the restrictions suggested in the ANPRM would only result in more people losing their SNAP benefits, which will make it harder to achieve this goal. Furthermore, the questions posed in the ANPRM 1) appear to be based on the assumption that many SNAP participants simply do not want to work, which we know to be untrue and 2) overlook the reality that many individuals receiving nutrition assistance face multiple barriers to work that reflect personal challenges such as education or skills gaps and more insidious structural labor market barriers such as discrimination in the labor market.
Requirements & Services for SNAP ABAWDs: Heartland Alliance Comments on USDA Advance Notice of Proposed RulemakingApr 9, 2018