Report finds AR policies make it harder to help hungry Arkansans during pandemic

Coronavirus

NORTHWEST ARKANSAS, (KNWA/KFTA) — The Arkansas Advocates for Children and Families said policies in our state are making it harder to end hunger.

AACF released a report and found that in Arkansas there are more than 150,000 Arkansans who are newly experiencing food insecurities since the pandemic started.

AACF’s Northwest Arkansas, Director Laura Kellams said that our state has several barriers which make it tough for hungry families.

Kellams said the state is much stricter than others when it comes to enrolling in programs like SNAP. For example, Arkansas is one of 10 states that limits the amount of money low-income families can have in their savings accounts to enroll in the program.

“We want our state lawmakers to think about why we have some of these extra restrictions in place and think through if this is making families more economically resilient of actually holding back families’ abilities to build savings and to climb out of poverty.”

The AACF has several recommendations including removing the asset limits, lifting work requirements and extending snap benefits to Marshallese.

Kellams said removing barriers like these will help more Arkansans recover economically faster. 

Copyright 2020 Nexstar Inc. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.

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