U.S. Poverty Weekly Update June 12, 2018

June 12, 2018

U.S. Poverty Campaigns

Weekly Update | June 12, 2018

“If financial security is your priority, you would be much better off lifting people from the bottom rather than waiting for a trickle from the top.”

– RESULTS Maine volunteer Brian Arundel in a June 9 op-ed in the Bangor Daily News

Got Two Minutes? Senate Farm Bill Protects SNAP – Tell Others to Follow Their Lead (June Action)

After months of waiting, we finally saw the Senate Agriculture Committee’s plans for the new Farm Bill last Friday. Thankfully, senators have rejected the House’s partisan approach and crafted a bipartisan bill that keeps SNAP (formerly Food Stamps) intact. The Agriculture Improvement Act of 2018 contains none of the changes in work requirements or broad-based categorical eligibility (BBCE)* contained in the House bill. While it does not include expansions RESULTS would prefer (e.g. an increase in benefits, broader eligibility), considering the Congress and White House we have right now, the Senate bill is the right approach. Help make sure others follow their lead.

TAKE ACTION: Take two minutes to start the June Action. The first of our cluster of activities is sending an e-mail to your members of Congress, urging them to follow the Senate’s lead in passing a bipartisan Farm Bill that protects SNAP.  Each person in your group should take this action using our updated online e-mail action.

*For more information about, listen to last week’s U.S. Poverty National Webinar with Allison Bovell-Ammon of Children’s HealthWatch.

Got Ten Minutes? Touch Base with Key Aides about SNAP (June Action)

Senate Agriculture Committee Chair Pat Roberts (R-KS) and Ranking Member Debbie Stabenow (D-MI) released their proposed Farm Bill late last week. Unlike the House Farm Bill, this bill recognizes the importance of food assistance in both practical and political terms. Practically, SNAP is the most effective food assistance program in the U.S., serving over 40 million people each month. Politically, the senators know that a partisan Farm Bill (like the House version) would never pass the Senate. We applaud them in rejecting the partisan approach and working together to protect access to food for low-income Americans.

Unlike the House bill, the Senate bill does not make changes to existing work requirements in SNAP. Instead, it builds on changes made in the 2014 Farm Bill by investing more money in the SNAP Employment and Training program (SNAP E&T) to test different pilot programs for helping SNAP recipients find work. The bill also invests in public-private partnerships to help SNAP recipients get connected to job training that meets local employment demand. The Senate bill also improves efficiency by allowing states to share SNAP data to ensure that persons moving from one state to another receive the benefits they should. See a detailed analysis of the Senate bill from the Center on Budget and Policy Priorities.

But the bill is not perfect either. It eliminates state incentives for improved performance and it makes no investments in increasing SNAP benefits, which currently average only $1.40 per meal. However, it is a path forward in the right direction. Instead of threatening SNAP recipients with more hunger and creating a massive new and unproven bureaucracy for job training like the House bill, the Senate is building on what’s already there and working.

TAKE ACTION: Take ten minutes to tick off another activity in the June Action by contacting House and Senate agriculture aides about Farm Bill negotiations. Find contact information for their DC offices on our Elected Officials page. For the Senate, tell the aides that you are pleased with the Senate bill’s protection of SNAP and urge their boss to oppose any amendments to the Senate Farm Bill that would undermine SNAP. For the House, ask aides to reject the House Farm Bill and instead urge leadership to support the Senate version. The June Action has talking points and background information to help you in your calls. If you have questions or need help, please contact Jos Linn.

Got Twenty Minutes? Create Your Plan to Mobilize (June Action)

Now that we know that the House and Senate are coming from two vastly different places on SNAP, we must mobilize our communities to ensure the final Farm Bill protects it. There are key decisions yet to be made: Will the House vote again on their bad bill? Will bad amendments be added to the Senate bill? Will House leaders allow a vote on the Senate bill? Will the President weigh at any point? All these and other factors highlight the importance of staying vigilant and mobilizing others. There is too much at stake to wait and see.

Mobilizing others to act is vital to any successful advocacy campaign. People have power. RESULTS volunteers have demonstrated this time and again. Inviting others to join your local groups, building up your local Action Networks, and most recently using #LettersGetLOUD to inspire others into action using old school (letters) and new school (social media) techniques are some of the reasons you get things done. With the future of food assistance at stake, what will you do to mobilize people you know into action?

TAKE ACTION: Take twenty minutes to lay out a plan to mobilize others into action around protecting SNAP in the June Action. Get started by:

  1. Pulling out your list of people who have already taken action this year with #LettersGetLOUD.
  2. Add new persons you can think of to the list.
  3. Invite them to write letters about protecting SNAP (use the Laser Talk in the June Action). Invite them to deliver them in person at your next local lobby meeting or collect them to deliver in your meetings at the RESULTS International Conference.
  4. Urge them to share their letters on social media.

If you want coaching on reaching and engaging people, please contact Jos Linn for assistance.

Quick News

Spring Friends and Family Campaign Goes Through June. Remember, the RESULTS Spring Friends and Family Fundraising Campaign has been extended to the end of June. Help us reach our $40,000 goal by June 30 – we are more than half way there! Use the resources in our Campaign Guide to get started and contact Mea Geizhals, Grassroots Fundraising Manager, for any help you need. 

It’s Not Too Late to Register for the Conference, and Get Help. The RESULTS International Conference is four weeks away – we want you there. Register today! And if you need help with expenses, apply for scholarship assistance (for active U.S. Poverty volunteers).

Sign Up for Conference Lobby Prep Calls. To help you get ready for your lobby meetings at the RESULTS International Conference, we want to start signing you up for lobby prep calls. Please have one person from your group fill in the appropriate Doodle and be sure to include your state (e.g. (AK)) along with your name. If you have any questions, please contact Susan.

Submit Your Bob Dickerson Award Nominations. Bob Dickerson of Seattle was a tireless advocate who epitomized this the best of what it means to be a RESULTS grassroots volunteer.  Make your nomination now for this year’s Bob Dickerson Grassroots Leadership Award. Share how the volunteer has achieved RESULTS’ mission, why they are a powerful citizen advocate, and how they inspire you. The deadline to nominate is Friday, June 22. 

RESULTS Attends Bonner Event. This past week, Emerson Hunger Fellow Funke Aderonmu presented at the 2018 Bonner Summer Leadership Institute in Staten Island, NY, an annual gathering of over 300 Bonner Scholars, faculty and university staff from colleges around the country. At the Institute Funke led sessions on the racial wealth divide and the power of community voices to effectively push for change.

Attend “Juneteenth: A Vision for Black Economic Liberation” Webinar. Commemorating June 19th, 1865, when Texas finally emancipated 250,000 slaves, Juneteenth serves as a reminder of how the road to freedom and liberation for Black people in America is complex, laden with naysayers and barriers, yet achievable. Please join a webinar on why we need to be talking about Black economic liberation, what it looks and feels like, and the challenges and opportunities we face in achieving economic justice and self-determination. The webinar is Tuesday, June 19 at 1:30pm ET. Register here.

Experts on Poverty Application Now Open. RESULTS Experts on Poverty cohort has been welcomed addition to the work of RESULTS over the last few years. These everyday people have educated, inspired, and informed volunteers and policy makers about the real hardships people experiencing poverty face. We are looking for new people to join this amazing group. If you or someone you know is interested, please fill out this application today.

Welcome New U.S. Poverty Interns. RESULTS is pleased to have Estefany Sanabria and Lakshmi Premysler join us this summer as new U.S. Poverty Interns. Estefany comes to us through the Ethnic Young Adult Program through the United Methodist Church. Estefany was born in Guatemala and raised in Chicago and is currently attending Harold Washington Community College studying business. Her asperations are to attend law school and become a lawyer. Lakshmi comes to us from the Zero Hunger Summer Internship Program. She is from the Washington, DC area, now attending Guilford College in Greensboro, NC. Lakshmi has been involved in numerous volunteer activities both in high school and college including after school programs, Head Start, and a local feeding program. Both Estefany and Lakshmi will be welcomes additions to our team in the run up to the RESULTS Conference and afterward. And they are diving in head first today with meetings on Capitol Hill on Lakshmi’s first day. Welcome, Estefany and Lakshmi!

Upcoming Events

Go to the RESULTS Events Calendar to see a full list of RESULTS events. Also, find a list of the RESULTS U.S. Poverty staff with contact information on the RESULTS website.

Upcoming U.S. Poverty staff time out of the office: Meredith Dodson, July 4-6 (vacation). Jos Linn, June 15 (personal), afternoon of July 3 (vacation). Funke Aderonmu, June 29 (personal).

U.S. Poverty Free Agents Calls, Tuesday, June 19 at 1:00pm and 8:00pm ET. Login at http://fuze.me/32256018 or dial in by phone at (201) 479-4595, Meeting ID: 32256018#.

2018 RESULTS International Conference, July 14-17, 2018, Grand Hyatt Hotel in Washington, D.C. There is still time to register for our biggest event of the year! Watch the 2018 Conference video and share it (along with our flyer) with others you know.

RESULTS Join U.S. and Global Poverty National Webinar, Saturday, August 11 at 2:00 pm ET. Participation info TBA.

Other Resources

Get Your RESULTS Promo Materials. If you need banners, pens, stickers, or business cards for your local RESULTS work, fill out our Materials Order Form and we’ll send them to you.

Got a Question for the RESULTS Board? If you have a question, comment, or suggestion for the RESULTS/RESULTS Educational Fund Board, please e-mail them to RESULTS Grassroots Board Member Steven McGee at [email protected]. View the most recently published Board minutes on the RESULTS website, as well as RESULTS’ most recent Annual Report.

Please Fill Out the Lobby Report Form. After any lobby meeting, please fill out the RESULTS Lobby Report Form to let us know how it went. When you have a meeting where both U.S. and global poverty issues are discussed, please fill it out twice.


2018 U.S. Poverty Campaigns Success Grid      
  Total to Date 2018 Goal Details
Face-to-Face Mtgs 32 200 12 Senators, 20 Representatives
Media 131 500 119 LTEs, 10 Op-Eds, 1 editorial, and 1 article/TV/radio in 32 states
# of people reached through outreach 448 500 Monthly #LettersGetLOUD meetings and 21 other outreach events
# of new U.S. Poverty volunteers from existing groups 16 100  

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