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Gillibrand Vows to Fight Military Hunger


24% of U.S. service members experience food insecurity. Senator Kirsten Gillibrand said that insecurity poses a threat to military readiness and national security. That is why she is looking to include the bipartisan Military Family Nutrition Access Act in the 2023 Farm Bill, which would get military members the food they need through SNAP.

The bill would exclude Basic Allowance for Housing (BAH) – a type of military compensation used to cover the costs of off-base housing – from income calculations that determine Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) eligibility. This change would ensure that SNAP is in line with other federal assistance programs that already exclude BAH in eligibility calculations, such as Head Start, the Earned Income Tax Credit and the Low-Income Housing Tax Credit.

“Nearly one-in-four active duty service members experience low food security, making them more likely to face hunger than people in the general population—it’s wrong and it’s unacceptable,” said Senator Gillibrand. “The problem stems from the fact that when SNAP calculates eligibility for SNAP benefits, it is counting Basic Allowance for Housing as income, despite the fact that housing vouchers are not counted for the civilian population. The bipartisan Military Family Nutrition Access Act would correct this injustice and exclude BAH from income calculations, enabling more military families to qualify for SNAP assistance. I plan on including this important legislation in the 2023 Farm Bill because in the richest country in the world, no one should face hunger—especially our service members.”


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