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Trump Administration's Food Stamps Cuts Won't Impact Indiana

U.S. Agriculture Secretary Sonny Perdue, whose department oversees SNAP benefits, or food stamps, speaks with the media at a WorkOne center in Indianapolis.

U.S. Agriculture Secretary Sonny Perdue, whose department oversees SNAP benefits, or food stamps, speaks with the media at a WorkOne center in Indianapolis. (Brandon Smith/IPB News)

The Trump administration is cutting off Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) benefits, or food stamps, for about 700,000 Americans.

Yet U.S. Agriculture Secretary Sonny Perdue, visiting Indiana Monday, says Hoosiers won’t be affected.

The new policy affects low-income adults who don’t have disabilities or children. They’re already restricted to just three months of food stamps within a three-year period unless they work or train to work 20 hours a week. But most states have long had waivers for that rule, extending those benefits longer. Come April, a new Trump administration rule will largely bar states from doing so.

Indiana, though, isn’t affected because unlike all its neighboring states, it already cuts off benefits for that pool of SNAP recipients. Perdue says Indiana is a model.

“When you have unemployment this low … we have more jobs than we have people looking for jobs, which oughta make it easier for those who are on these benefits to move off of that into a job,” Perdue says.

The SNAP cuts have been decried by many, including the Indiana Institute for Working Families. It notes Congress has previously rejected such attempts to cut off access to benefits.

Contact Brandon at bsmith@ipbs.org or follow him on Twitter at @brandonjsmith5.

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