MDHS Applauds USDA for Boosts to SNAP, Providing Marylanders with Additional Relief During COVID-19
410-528-0021, ext. 3018
Statement attributable to Michael J. Wilson, Director, Maryland Hunger Solutions
BALTIMORE, April 6, 2021 – Maryland Hunger Solutions (MDHS) commends the Biden-Harris administration for expanding Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) Emergency Allotments during COVID-19.
A core strategy of our organization has been to increase and expand state participation in federal nutrition programs. Connecting people in need to federal nutrition programs like SNAP is an essential strategy for addressing food insecurity and poverty.
The U.S. Department of Agriculture’s (USDA) decision to increase emergency benefits will provide $16 million per month in additional food assistance to SNAP participants in Maryland.
This correction ensures that participants who missed out on original SNAP boosts due to already meeting the maximum monthly allotment will now have the ability to feed their household. At a time when retail food prices have risen 3.5 percent — which is 75 percent above the preceding 20-year average — we know that their benefit dollars have not bought as much food as before the pandemic.
The COVID-19 pandemic has caused devastating financial hardships for Maryland families. Since the beginning of the pandemic, the state saw a steep 42 percent increase in the number of SNAP recipients in Maryland. SNAP provides important nutritional support by providing monetary benefits to supplement the food budget of limited resource Marylanders so they can purchase healthy food and address their food insecurity challenges.
We are grateful that the USDA was able to resolve the litigation and that millions of SNAP-eligible participants across the nation will benefit. Maryland Hunger Solutions will continue working with the state of Maryland and the USDA to implement relief as permitted by this decision, as well as outlined by the American Rescue Plan, that will limit the depth and the duration of food hardship and economic disruption created by this pandemic.
Maryland Hunger Solutions works to end hunger and improve the nutrition, health, and well-being of children and families in Maryland.