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SNAP Cuts Will Hurt Many
October 27, 2017

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According to the U.S. Census Bureau, roughly one in seven West Virginians are "food insecure." Food insecurity means that some point during the year that household has a difficult time putting food on the table due to lack of money, lack of access, or lack of resources in general. In this land of plenty, such scarcity should concern us all.

As local farmers, we here at Green Gate Farm want to stand up for the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) - more commonly known as food stamps. Farmers work long hours and the profit margins are tight, but SNAP helps us as much as it helps our hungry neighbors. In 2016, $6,866 was spent at the Charles Town Farmers' Market through this program. That's just one instance of the many farmer's markets across the state where money is going straight to the farmers. We take pride in providing our community with good, wholesome food produced by hard honest work. And I, for one, want to make sure hungry families continue to have access to nutritious food.

Furthermore, if a food insecure family spends their SNAP dollars at Walmart or Dollar General, that money flows out of our community and into the pockets of retailers and giant food processors. If they spend their money at the Farmers' Market in Charles Town or Shepherdstown, that money stays in our community and helps sustain a small farm. Keeping and increasing this program would only benefit your neighbors and small business owners.

Please call or write your members of Congress and urge them to support SNAP in the 2018 Farm Bill Reauthorization. It is critical for our fellow West Virginians and it is critical for the growers who work to provide our communities with good, healthy food. You can also visit www.wvfarmbill2018.com to learn more information and watch videos about what the 2018 Farm Bill means to our communities.

Leslie Randall

Green Gate Farm

Shepherdstown

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