Rep Hayes Introduces Legislation To Give More Americans Access To SNAP

April 24, 2020
Press Release

WASHINGTON- This week, Congresswoman Jahana Hayes (CT-05) introduced the Food For Working Families Act of 2020, which would exclude Federal Pandemic Unemployment Compensation (FPUC) from consideration when determining eligibility for the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP).

“It is absolutely imperative that we protect food security for as many Americans as possible in these unprecedented times,” said Congresswoman Hayes. “In creating Federal Pandemic Unemployment Compensation, Congress intended to put more resources into the pockets of Americans who have lost work due to COVID-19, not block their access to critical nutrition programs. SNAP is one of the most effective tools we have to inoculate Americans from hunger and bolster our economy. As Congress continues to craft legislation to address the widespread effects of COVID-19 on public health and our economy, I will continue to put the essential needs of Connecticut families first.”

Federal Pandemic Unemployment Compensation, created under the CARES Act, provides an additional $600 benefit that supplements weekly Unemployment Insurance benefits including regular, state Unemployment Compensation (UC), Extended Benefits (EB), Pandemic Unemployment Assistance (PUA), and Pandemic Emergency Unemployment Compensation (PEUC). Currently, FPUC is considered when determining eligibility for SNAP, although it is disregarded for other programs like Medicaid and the Children’s Health Insurance Program (CHIP). The Food For Working Families Act of 2020 addresses this issue by declaring that the FPUC be disregarded from consideration of income and resources for SNAP eligibility.

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Rep. Jahana Hayes has been a public school teacher in Connecticut for more than 15 years and was recognized in 2016 as the National Teacher of the Year.

Currently serving her first term in the U.S. House of Representatives, Rep. Hayes sits on the Committees on Education & Labor and Agriculture and proudly represents Connecticut’s 5th District.

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