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Jeanne Dowd: Protect food assistance from federal sequester

To the editor:

Today, 47 million Americans are on the SNAP program (formerly Food Stamps). Of that number, 22 million are children and 9 million are seniors and disabled adults. This $80 billion program allows those in poverty a $3 a day benefit for basic daily sustenance. Now, because of the federal budget sequester, automatic cuts to this and other important social programs may begin in March.

How will cuts impact those on SNAP? All those receiving help would see cuts to their benefits, some would be eliminated from the program and thousands of preschoolers would lose access to meals. Why is this happening? Because Congress is looking to cut the deficit. Is it right to allow a child to go hungry in order to reduce the deficit?

As a mother, a volunteer for the RESULTS anti-poverty group and citizen, I say, “No, it is wrong!”

We are asking our representatives in Congress to fight for our children. U.S. Rep. James McGovern is a great supporter of critical social programs. He must remember that we are counting on him to help keep our families and children out of devastating poverty.

Jeanne Dowd

Greenfield

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