This week, pandemic aid that increased food stamps is set to be cut, bringing additional strain to struggling and low-income Americans and causing food backs across the country to brace for the worst.
Come March 1, the emergency allotment for those enrolled in SNAP — the federal Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program — will end in 32 states, Guam and the U.S. Virgin Islands.
According to the Center on Budget and Policy Priorities, a left-leaning policy think tank, the end of SNAP, could cause grocery allocations to be reduced by $95.
The reduction means that while the daily budget was previously $9, it would be reduced by $2.90 to roughly $6.10.
The reduction comes as food prices have risen by about 10 percent in January.
Those who will be affected are speaking about the hardships they anticipate.
63-year-old Charles Jones, a U.S. military veteran residing in Rockford, Illinois, who currently receives a $281 benefit under the temporary measure, will have his payments plummet to $23 a week ($92 a month) when the temporary measure ends.
He described losing the SNAP benefit as putting him in a “serious problem.”
Jones explained that the extra money from the pandemic measure helped him move out of a homeless shelter and into a studio with a rent of $650 a month.
Jones, who also receives Social Security disability insurance, said that slashing SNAP would cause most of his income to go toward rent and utilities, jeopardizing his shot to become stable.
According to the latest federal data, which goes up to October last year, nearly 42.3 million Americans benefited from SNAP, meaning there could be countless other stories like Jones.