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VA law prevents utility shutoffs in extreme circumstances; MI construction industry responds to a high number of worker suicides; 500,000 still without power or water in the Houston area; KY experts: Children, and babies at higher risk for heat illness.

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The House passes the SAVE Act, but fails to hold Attorney General Merrick Garland in inherent contempt of Congress, and a proposed federal budget could doom much-needed public services.

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Enticing remote workers to move is a new business strategy in rural America, Eastern Kentucky preservationists want to save the 20th century home of a trailblazing coal miner, and a rule change could help small meat and poultry growers and consumers.

Inflation, Benefit Cuts Spur Demand at IN Food Banks

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Monday, March 6, 2023   

The federal Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program will reduce benefits by almost $90 per person at the end of March, but the change does not apply to Indiana, which is causing some confusion.

Congress voted to end the extra, pandemic-related benefits as part of a government funding package passed last year.

Emily Weikert Bryant, executive director of Feeding Indiana's Hungry, explained the benefits were already reduced in Indiana last summer by the General Assembly, so this month's federal reduction does not apply.

"Many people are hearing that their SNAP benefits are going to be reduced shortly, and in Indiana, that is not the case," Weikert Bryant clarified. "We want to make sure people are not alarmed, thinking that something is going to happen in Indiana, when it's already happened."

She noted starting in June of last year, SNAP benefits in Indiana went back to normal levels based upon household size, expenses and eligibility. According to the nonprofit Feeding America, more than 46% of the households receiving SNAP benefits in the state include children.

One in nine Indiana residents is considered food insecure. Weikert Bryant pointed out many of the people served by her organization's network of 11 food banks lack sufficient employment and dependable transportation. Their paychecks are not keeping up with inflation, prompting more visits to area food banks.

"And one of the things that our food banks are noting is causing that impact is, we have seen these increases in client numbers steadily grow since ending the SNAP emergency allotments last year," Weikert Bryant observed.

Feeding Indiana's Hungry serves all 92 Indiana counties.

Disclosure: Feeding Indiana’s Hungry contributes to our fund for reporting on Hunger/Food/Nutrition. If you would like to help support news in the public interest, click here.


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