WHEREAS, Food insecurity remains a growing problem in the United States, especially among lower-income communities of color; and
WHEREAS, The National Institutes of Health determined in 2020 that health disparities exacerbated by racial discrimination increased the prevalence of food insecurity for Black households and the COVID-19 pandemic caused higher rates of food insecurity for Black households than other populations; and
WHEREAS, Food insecurity can have harmful lifelong effects on the health and well-being of individuals, which can lead to higher incidences of chronic disease, such as obesity, hypertension, and malnutrition-related disorders, exacerbating health disparities; and
WHEREAS, Food insecurity is especially harmful to children as it can disrupt their physical, emotional and cognitive development, which can be especially impactful and lead to lifelong effects on their health, education and well-being; and
WHEREAS, Programs, most notably, the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP), formerly known as food stamps, remain one of the most important and effective policy tools to address and improve food security and nutrition in this country; and
WHEREAS, This program continues to provide vital economic benefits for individuals and communities with a proven track record of reducing hunger, creating jobs, and having an overall positive economic impact on the communities where SNAP is used; and
WHEREAS, The SNAP program is operated by the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) under the, Agriculture Improvement Act of 2018, known as the Farm Bill. The current version of the Farm Bill is up for its 5-year reauthorization expiring on September 30, 2023; and
WHEREAS, Despite the ongoing proven need for SNAP and nutritional programs it is being targeted by some congressional policymakers for cuts to beneficiaries and changes to its requirements; and
WHEREAS, There is a strong push among certain congressional leaders and members to impose stricter work requirements for SNAP beneficiaries above the current SNAP rules that already impose limitations for people aged 18 to 49 to three months of financial assistance every three years unless they are working, in a work or training program at least 20 hours a week, or qualify for limited exemptions. Mounting evidence shows that these SNAP requirements increase hardship without improving employment outcomes; and
WHEREAS, Inflation has greatly contributed to much higher prices of all food items which sharply impacts and limits millions of individuals and families spending abilities; and
WHEREAS, As a member of the Department of Agriculture's Equity Commission tasked to make recommendations for changes to USDA policies and programs that eliminate barriers and systemic discrimination and advance equity, the NAACP will use that forum to inform, advise and speak in full support of equitable policies and programs that reduce food insecurity; and
WHEREAS, The NAACP reaffirms its previous resolutions from 1976, 1997, 2011, 2014, 2020 speaking to food insecurity.
THEREFORE, BE IT RESOLVED, the NAACP will strongly advocate against any and all attempts to reduce funding for SNAP, as well as strongly advocate to increase current and future funding based on the median income of Black/African Americans and indigenous populations of that county, and the implementation of new harsh and unwarranted work requirements.
BE IT FINALLY RESOLVED, the NAACP remain engaged with the Biden Administration and Congress as the Farm Bill reauthorization proceeds in opposition to cuts to SNAP or any changes that will take food away from people of color, children, older Americans, veterans, low-income working parents and people with disabilities, whom have been forced through law and policy to live at the economic margins.