Congressional COVID-19 Relief Bill Is ‘Too Little, Too Late’ for Nation’s Hungry

With Congress agreeing on a new, $900 billion COVID-19 relief package earlier today that includes a limited boost in SNAP (formerly food stamps) benefits, Abby J. Leibman, President and CEO of MAZON: A Jewish Response to Hunger, issued the following statement:

“We are relieved to finally see an agreement from Congress. But we are also frustrated and disappointed because this is too little that comes far too late for the millions who have been suffering from hunger and food insecurity and waiting for help. While the bill boosts SNAP benefits for six months, we know that the pandemic and its economic fallout including the hunger crisis won’t end by then. Astoundingly, this bill also fails to address the struggling military families who cannot qualify for SNAP. We call on the Biden-Harris administration to make hunger in the military an urgent priority.

At MAZON, Jewish values drive our mission to end hunger. In Deuteronomy 15:7, we are commanded: ‘Do not harden your heart and shut your hand against your needy kinsman.’ For far too many months, administration officials and some in Congress, with hardened hearts and closed hands, inexplicably failed to recognize the devastation ravaging the lives of millions.

We are optimistic that the Biden-Harris Administration and the new Congress will rise to the challenges of this moment and show more wisdom, compassion, and leadership than the Trump Administration and some in Congress, who have blocked and delayed solutions in 2020.”