January 08, 2024

Reps. Levin and Van Orden Lead Bipartisan Bill to Help Combat Food Insecurity Among Veterans

Washington, D.C. – Today, Reps. Mike Levin (CA-49) and Derrick Van Orden (WI-03) introduced the bipartisan Veteran Hunger Coordination Act to help combat food insecurity among veterans. Low-income veterans are on average less likely to participate in Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) than the overall low-income U.S. population. This bill would require the Government Accountability Office (GAO) to submit a report on how states have targeted veterans in their annual SNAP outreach plans and coordinated with Veterans Health Administration (VHA) facilities and veteran service organizations (VSOs) to connect veterans to these programs.

“Anyone who served our country should never struggle to feed themselves or their family,” said Rep. Levin. “It’s critical that we connect our veterans to these programs and resources to ensure they’re getting the vital nutrition assistance they need. While there’s more we must do to take care of our veterans, this is an important step toward increasing the number of those who will benefit from nutrition assistance programs. It’s the least we can do to support our nation’s heroes and their families.”

“During my time of service, I relied on WIC to put food on the table, so I know how important programs like SNAP and WIC are for servicemembers, veterans, and their families,” said Rep. Van Orden. “Those who serve and have served our nation should not have to worry about where their next meal will come from. In having the GAO submit a report on SNAP outreach to veterans, Congress will have a greater understanding of how we can continue working to combat veteran food insecurity and ensure they are being connected with their local Veteran Health Administration facility to get the resources and support they need.”

Rep. Levin has been a champion in fighting food insecurity among veterans, service members, and their families. In September, he reintroduced the bipartisan Military Dependents School Meal Eligibility Act of 2023 to remove the basic allowance for housing (BAH) from the military’s calculation of income for eligibility in free and reduced-price school meal programs.

To learn more about the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program, click here. San Diego residents can also learn more by visiting the San Diego Food Bank’s website.