Attributed to Kate Leone, Chief Government Relations Officer
“Feeding America applauds the announcement that President Biden will sign an executive order that will start rescinding the harmful expansion of the “public charge” policy to programs including the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP). This policy negatively impacts individuals seeking lawful residency or citizenship if they seek public benefits such as SNAP even when they are legally entitled to that assistance. This cruel and racist policy created unnecessary fear and confusion, dissuading immigrant communities – regardless of whether they are individually impacted by the rule – from seeking food assistance of any kind.
“As the largest domestic hunger-relief organization in the United States, we know this dangerous policy created an increase in hardship for immigrant communities. We look forward to working with the Biden Administration to make sure that everyone in the United States has access to food assistance programs without fear of reprisal in any form."
Background on the Public Charge Rule:
Federal immigration policy has allowed officials to deny entry or legal permanent residency to immigrants on the basis that they are likely to become a public charge, or dependent on government benefits as their main source of support. Before the recent expansion of this policy, only the receipt of Temporary Assistance for Needy Families (TANF) cash benefits and Medicaid long-term care were considered during case evaluation. The recently-implemented rule that broadened the definition of public charge to include consideration of certain additional public services including food assistance through SNAP.
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About Feeding America
Feeding America® is the largest hunger-relief organization in the United States. Through a network of more than 200 food banks, 21 statewide food bank associations, and over 60,000 partner agencies, food pantries and meal programs, we helped provide 6.6 billion meals to tens of millions of people in need last year. Feeding America also supports programs that prevent food waste and improve food security among the people we serve; brings attention to the social and systemic barriers that contribute to food insecurity in our nation; and advocates for legislation that protects people from going hungry. Visit www.feedingamerica.org, find us on Facebook or follow us on Twitter.