Message from Janet Murguía, UnidosUS President and CEO
Last week, the House-Senate Conference Committee reached an agreement on the farm bill, which the president is expected to sign this week. This is a victory for millions of working families and their children, including millions of Latino families, who rely on the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) to put food on their table. And this win would not have been possible without the months of work that our organization and our Affiliates did to advance our community’s health and well-being.
Our advocacy work included:
- Meeting with nearly 50 members of Congress and their staff across both major parties, including the Chairs and Ranking Members of the Senate and House Agriculture Committees, to educate members about the importance of SNAP for Latinos and to elevate UnidosUS’s concerns about the farm bill.<
- Partnering with the Congressional Hispanic Caucus to host a Capitol Hill briefing related to the farm bill’s impact on the Latino community.
- Hosting Latino leaders roundtables in Orlando, FL, at UnidosUS Affiliate Acacia Network; in Las Vegas, NV, with UnidosUS Affiliate Community Services of Nevada; and in San Antonio, TX, with UnidosUS Affiliate Mexican American Unity Council, to discuss the impact of the proposals in the farm bill on the Latino community.
The final bill agreed to by Congress preserves SNAP, our nation’s most effective anti-hunger program, which has helped 10 million low-income Latinos afford food and lifted millions of Americans out of poverty.
And as importantly, the final version of the bill rejected work requirements and changes to eligibility that could have been detrimental to millions of families across the country. Now, programs like SNAP will continue to act as important lifelines for many Americans.
This bipartisan congressional agreement is rare in today’s difficult political climate, but it’s significant for our country. We are proud of those members of Congress who stood for a program that helps families put food on the table, especially the bipartisan leadership of Senators Pat Roberts and Debbie Stabenow in advancing our priorities and protecting the Latino community, and we see this victory as an important sign of what we can achieve when we work together.