Letter to the Editor by Kathy Hay

To the Editor:

Our representative, Anne Osmundson, in the Iowa House, has cosponsored House File 3 which adds eligibility obstacles and restrictions on individuals and families receiving SNAP.  This is a program that provides financial support for people in need to provide food on their table.

An average of 50% of the people who are nourished with this support are our northeast Iowa children and 24% are our northeast Iowa elderly. The money does not come from our Iowa state taxes. It is a federal program so it is already coming to the state.

SNAP is a program where eligibility is based on income. This bill would add obstacles including having to meet monthly red tape requirements so that our friends and neighbors would lose eligibility and access to food for our northeast Iowa children and elderly.

I don’t know about you, but I have always been proud and hopeful about our northeast Iowa value of taking care of our friends and neighbors, whoever they may be. This includes planting and harvesting on a neighbor’s farm when there has been an accident, attending and contributing to fund raisers for our neighbors going through medical emergencies or loss of their homes to a fire. I believe it also includes making sure that none of our neighbors go hungry, especially our most vulnerable, our children and elderly. It is a bill that is meant to punish people for needing help in hard times.

I did not vote for punishing our children and our elderly. Did you?

Let Representative Osmundson know you want her to withdraw sponsorship of this bill, vote no, and stop using our children and elderly as pawns in the politics game.

Kathy Hay