You’ve seen the news. Efforts to decouple food stamps and farm policy will ensure only the failure of both, devastating millions of Americans. But non-farmers are still innocently asking the question: why were food stamps and farm policy stuck together legislatively in the first place?
Here at IL Corn, we’ve received questions from non-farmers via our social media outlets about the Farm Bill failure, what it has to do with food stamps, and why the two concepts are linked in one bill to begin with. Lindsay Mitchell, IL Corn Project Coordinator took a stab at answering that question in her recent blog post here.
This is good information that might clear up some confusion for you too. And if you already have a complete understanding of the farm bill, food stamps and why they are linked, you might consider reading this article anyway. It is a good model for how you might answer some of these questions on your own from non-farmers in your own community.
As always, encourage those conversations. Talk about what you do. Listen to people’s concerns. Engage them by talking about your similarities. Help them to trust you because you are a farmer that shares their goals for their family.
Transparency and open dialogue is the only way to turn the current wave of misunderstanding around.
WHY COMBINE FOOD STAMPS AND FARM POLICY?
After the train wreck that became the failure of the Farm Bill in the House of Representatives more than a week ago, there are all sorts of theories on what might happen next. Maybe the House Ag Committee will take the bill back, make a few changes, and try to get it to the floor for passage again. Maybe they will do a complete overhaul, taking out anything remotely controversial, just to get it to conference committee with the Senate.
And then there is the push to separate the farm bill and the SNAP program (food stamps) into two separate pieces of legislation. Some legislators think this would help.
Americans are left wondering, why were farm bill and food stamps combined into one piece of legislation in the first place?
Well, for starters, the two concepts aren't as far removed as you might think. The food stamp program is to provide food security for families that struggle to provide for themselves. The Farm Bill is to provide food security for our nation so that we don't have to import food from other countries. …. Click here to read more!
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