Oh, SNAP! Florida lets kids go hungry
To the editor:
The Federal SNAP emergency food allotments ended in February for Florida. Our state legislators could have accepted the ongoing Federal assistance for poor families to receive nutritious food. Instead the Republican-led legislators and Governor decided to turn down the extra food assistance for Florida’s children.
Giving poor children food would require Florida to receive, at no additional cost to Florida taxpayers, ongoing aid from the federal government to supplement food for a starving child who is a citizen with two parents earning $2,495 or less. In March those families will only get food aid if earning less than $1,920 a month in Florida. You will recall the average rent in Fort Myers starts above $2,000. a month. The legislature of the Republican Party while ostensively busy protecting zygotes chooses to turn down the help. This punishment of the post-born children of Florida, apparently for no reason, describes the meanness of spirit of Florida’s GOP lawmakers.
Food supplements, of course, also are a boost to farmers, and grocery stores, and employees of farms and grocery stores, because the sales volume increases their business viability. Children do better in school when fed, etc.
Meanwhile last week, the Coalition of Immokalee (farm) Workers marched across the state to request fair food wage increases, and additional agreements of food sales corporations. They ask is for a code of conduct to not traffic in human slavery, and address sexual assaults on the job. Their petitions are not frivolous demands. The CIW program also asks a penny per pound incentive to farmers for wage bonuses for workers. Farm machinery and H visa “temporary” workers from Mexico compete with these working families for minimum wage jobs in the tomato fields. Obviously this competition is used by the corporations for suppressing wages downward. CIW has a website for more information.