Today the President signed the Farm Bill, the Agriculture Improvement Act of 2018, into law. In response to the announcement, the Mississippi Center for Justice issued the following statement:
“The Mississippi Center for Justice commends Congress for passing a bipartisan Farm Bill that safeguards essential federal nutrition programs including the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP), our nation’s most vital and cost-effective anti-hunger lifeline. By protecting and making modest improvements to SNAP, this legislation continues critical nutrition assistance to millions of Americans and more than half a million Mississippians who struggle to afford groceries and keep food on the table, including working families, children, veterans, people with disabilities, and elderly adults. We applaud Congress for rejecting the House Farm Bill’s proposed nutrition provisions, which would have punished and stigmatized struggling Americans and unraveled decades of progress in our nation’s war on hunger by ending or dramatically cutting SNAP benefits for nearly 2 million people. We are also heartened to see the Farm Bill’s increased investment in programs that strengthen healthy food access for struggling patients who are at risk of or have a diet-related condition such as diabetes. By harnessing the power of food as medicine, these investments—including a new Produce Prescription Program—have the potential to improve food security, combat chronic health conditions, and reduce associated health care costs in Mississippi and around the country.
While the final Farm Bill gives us all something to celebrate this holiday season, we have significant work ahead in our fight for a food secure Mississippi. Today, 1 in 5 Mississippians struggle against hunger, with direct harms to their health, economic stability, and productivity. The Mississippi Center for Justice is committed to working with Congress, state policymakers, advocates, and community members to build on the Farm Bill’s foundation and advance healthy food access for all.”
For more information on the Mississippi Center for Justice’s work to end food insecurity and protect and strengthen access to public benefits in Mississippi, contact Madeline Morcelle, staff attorney at firstname.lastname@example.org, or Kathryn Rehner, policy associate, at email@example.com.