As the deadline for increasing the nation’s debt ceiling grows closer, crucial negotiations between the President and Congressional leaders over short-term deficit reduction continue. The Greater Chicago Food Depository’s Executive Director and CEO, Kate Maehr, recently wrote a piece for the Huffington Post Chicago, where she highlighted those who are most at risk during the deficit battles:

“We understand the long-term importance of getting our nation’s financial house in order. But, we urge Congress to take a measured approach in the budget battle and avoid slashing vital services that are essential to the stability and wellbeing of those most in need, especially children and the elderly. A downward spiral is a real worry. Cuts at the federal and state level will place enormous burdens on scores of critical human services organizations – and, this at a time when 1.8 million people and 850,000 households in Illinois are currently receiving SNAP benefits, the highest number ever.”

We must tell Congress that any debt ceiling or deficit reduction plan must protect programs for low-income families and individuals–particularly key support programs like SNAP (formerly Food Stamps). The plan should reduce poverty and help disadvantaged people, even as it attempts to shrink the deficit. Low-income assistance programs must be exempt from any caps and automatic across-the-board cuts that could be triggered when budget targets or fiscal restraint targets are missed.

Use your voice and tell Congress to oppose harmful cuts or caps to nutrition programs. Visit our Advocacy Center and take action today!

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