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Hungry Mainers Rely on SNAP

August 24, 2018

The Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP)—formerly known as food stamps—is our nation’s most important and effective anti-hunger program.

SNAP reduces hunger and food insecurity by providing low-income households with desperately needed assistance to purchase the food that they need. The monthly benefits provided by SNAP play a critical role in reducing hunger, malnutrition, and poverty. SNAP provides a foundation for addressing and ending hunger because it provides the rapid, flexible, and targeted assistance that is needed to reach vulnerable populations and help lift hungry and very low-income Americans out of poverty.

SNAP benefits also empower hungry and food insecure households to reclaim dignity by enabling individuals and families to purchase and consume food that fits their nutritional and social needs. This leads SNAP to improve health and well-being, learning outcomes for children, and employment and earnings for adults.

Finally, SNAP benefits entire communities by bringing more money to food sellers—from grocery stores to farmers’ markets—which provides a monthly boost to local economies. SNAP also relieves pressure on overwhelmed charitable food providers—including soup kitchens, food banks, pantries, and religious congregations—which, alone, are not able to meet the demand and scale of hunger in their communities.

In Maine, SNAP is the first and primary line of defense for helping hungry people get enough to eat. Specifically, SNAP supports low-income Mainers reduce stress and financial strain by helping households put food on the table when they have nowhere else to turn.

As a rural state with some of the lowest average weekly wages and the highest percentage of seniors (over 65) in the nation, SNAP is vital for helping vulnerable Mainers stretch tight budgets and get food on the table.

  • 62% of Maine SNAP participants are in households with children
  • 46% contain household members who are elderly or have a disability
  • 42% are in working households

Hungry Mainers rely on SNAP! To fight and eventually end hunger in Maine we must continue to protect and strengthen this vital anti-hunger program! Find out how you can help protect SNAP now!

*Maine SNAP participant data taken from Center on Budget and Policy Priorities