May 16, 2013
Earlier today, our very own Josh Protas, Director of Government Affairs spoke in support of SNAP at an anti-hunger press event hosted by Congresswoman Rosa DeLauro (D-CT), Congressman James McGovern (D-MA) and Congresswoman Marcia Fudge (D-OH):
“In Leviticus 19, we are commanded: “When you reap the harvest of your land, you shall not reap all the way to the corners of your field or gather the gleanings of your harvest… you shall leave them for the poor and the stranger.”
This fundamental statement is one of more than thirty direct references in the Torah about our collective responsibility to care for the vulnerable people among us.
That obligation drives the work of MAZON: A Jewish Response to Hunger, to end hunger in this country. We are fortunate to have many partners in the faith and nonprofit communities working towards that shared goal. But charity alone cannot solve a problem that is so large and widespread.
Our federal government represents the voice of the American people. It functions to address our collective responsibility to one another and carry out our national priorities. Today, some Members of Congress are actively failing all of us in this responsibility as they turn their backs on millions struggling with hunger.
The Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program is the cornerstone of our nation’s nutrition safety net. It is nothing short of a lifeline for millions of Americans.
We are stunned by proposals in both chambers of Congress this week that would drastically cut funding for SNAP. It is appalling that Members of Congress are playing politics at the expense of millions of our neighbors assisted by SNAP – families with children, seniors, members of our military, people with disabilities, the working poor.
Rather than embracing the bi-partisan, balanced approach used for decades, they have mired the Farm Bill in misguided attempts to realize budget savings that will do real harm to vulnerable people across the country.
We are outraged that so many Members of Congress seem focused not on why millions of Americans need help putting food on the table, but rather on what it costs to help them. They are blinded by the large price tag, which they then use as justification for slashing the program.
Rather than attempting to solve our nation’s financial woes with a sledgehammer, we urge our leaders in Washington to take a more discriminating approach to find real efficiencies in governmental spending instead of being complicit in Draconian cuts that will tragically increase food insecurity.”