Pair Highlight Their Proposal to Expand, Strengthen SNAP Food Assistance
Denver – Today, Colorado U.S. Senator Michael Bennet (D) and Congressman Joe Neguse (D) volunteered at the Louisville Community Food Share’s drive-through pantry, helping pack and distribute boxes of fresh, nutritious food to Coloradans in need.
Bennet and Neguse pack boxes of food. The pair wore orange masks, handmade by Bennet’s wife, to honor National Gun Violence Awareness Day.
“It is unacceptable that 1 in 6 children in Boulder and Broomfield counties do not have enough to eat. While food banks like Community Food Share are working around the clock to feed their communities, they are strained by almost unheard of demand – and more and more families need support as a result of the toll the COVID-19 health and economic crisis has taken on our communities,” said Bennet. “I’m extremely grateful for the work Community Food Share is doing to support Louisville families. At the same time, we need Congressional action to support hungry families – that’s why I’ve introduced a proposal to increase SNAP benefits by 15% and to keep that increase in place until the economy recovers. I’ll keep working with Congressman Neguse to push this legislation through to ensure those who don’t have access to fresh, nutritious food can get it.”
“I was grateful for the opportunity to visit Community Food Share in Louisville today with Senator Bennet and visit with the many hardworking volunteers who are helping to ensure our communities have the resources they need in this unprecedented moment. They are truly unsung heroes, working diligently to keep their shelves stocked and their doors open as many more families seek the aid of food banks and nutrition assistance amidst this crisis. Myself and Senator Bennet have partnered together on an initiative to expand the SNAP food assistance program and I am working to provide greater flexibility and accessibility as many more families seek additional resources to put food on the table. No family, no Coloradan could have anticipated this crisis, and we can’t expect them to weather it alone,” said Neguse.
“In light of the pandemic, we’ve seen a concerning increase in families from Boulder and Broomfield Counties requiring food assistance. In the last three months alone, our food bank distributed more than three million pounds of food,” said Kim Ruotsala, Executive Director of Community Food Share. “I’m so glad we have Senator Bennet and Congressman Neguse working to increase support for food banks and food insecure families. It’s important, now more than ever, that food banks have the resources we need to make sure families in need have access to nutritious food.”
Community Food Share serves Boulder and Broomfield counties by providing access to fresh, nutritious food through local partners, as well its onsite and mobile pantries. Since the Coronavirus Disease 2019 (COVID-19) pandemic began, Community Food Share has distributed 41% more food than is typical for this time of year. March and April were record-setting months in their 39-year history, and they’ve distributed more than three million pounds of food over the last three months.
Download HD photos of Bennet and Neguse’s visit HERE.
Bennet and Neguse’s proposal to expand and strengthen SNAP Food Assistance will reform SNAP by:
- Increasing the maximum SNAP benefit by 15%, providing additional funding for the Food Distribution Program on Indian Reservations, and eliminating work requirements during recessions. This includes through the end of the COVID-19 public health crisis and thereafter, until the unemployment rate declines near to where it was before the crisis began; and
- Ensuring the use of broad-based categorical eligibility so that more vulnerable families can access SNAP benefits, even outside of a crisis.