Food stamps put Thanksgiving on more Illinois tables

Food stamps put Thanksgiving on more Illinois tables

Illinoisans are more likely to give thanks that their Thanksgiving meal was purchased with food stamps than in any surrounding state. As the national participation declines, SNAP in Illinois has grown.

Over 1.2 million low-income Illinoisans will have a Thanksgiving meal thanks to food stamps, which at 15.1% of the population is a higher rate than in any neighboring state.

It is also more than last year. Illinois’ food stamp recipients have grown by 3.3% while national participation is down 1.9%, according to the latest numbers from the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program, or SNAP, for August 2021 compared to August 2020.

While nearly 1-in-7 families can enjoy a meal thanks to the food stamps program, what would make Illinoisans truly thankful this holiday season would be improved job and economic conditions. Illinois state and local taxes are the highest in the national and the state is lagging the national recovery from the COVID-19 economic downturn.

Reforms such reining in public pensions, a spending cap tied to the growth of taxpayer incomes and property tax relief would free up dollars in family budgets, and give more people the dignity of paying for their own turkeys.

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