Food assistance benefits to nearly 100,000 Mainers were sharply cut this month under budget legislation enacted by Congress late last year.
The average cut to the federal Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program in Maine is $190, Alex Carter, a policy advocate with Maine Equal Justice, told the Portland Press Herald.
Congress had authorized extra SNAP benefits temporarily in 2020 to help low-income people through the pandemic. About 42 million Americans receive SNAP benefits.
“This additional emergency SNAP benefit will end as of February 28, 2023,’’ the state of Maine says. “SNAP recipients will see a decrease in benefits starting in March 2023.’’
Advocates are expecting food pantries to see an increase in demand. Here are some resources:
Good Shepherd Food Bank offers a search tool to find a food pantry near you.
The State of Maine also lists food assistance programs by town.
Healthy Acadia offers this list of resources.
In Washington County, Maine Seacoast Mission provides food assistance. Go here for more information about food security.
Catholic Charities of Maine has more information, particularly for Aroostook County.
WGME also provides information on the cuts and a list of resources.
The state of Maine has provided more information about the benefits and also provides information on eligibility requirements.