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Opinion: GOP plan to tie food stamps to job training is not ‘reform’

Opinion: GOP plan to tie food stamps to job training is not ‘reform’

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Seattle, WA, May 9, 2018 | comments

WHEN I heard that House Republicans were looking to expand a bipartisan job training and employment pilot program I spearheaded and that was signed into law by President Obama, I was pleasantly surprised. Speaker Paul Ryan even called it “the precise thing we need to do to get people from welfare to work.”

Once I reviewed the text of the recently released Farm Bill, it became obvious that the intent wasn’t to give people the skills they need to obtain higher-paying jobs that provide a livable wage. It was simply another attempt to take away nutrition assistance from millions of children and working families and call it “reform.”

Why are they doing this? Over the years, our state has become a national model for helping disadvantaged Americans land good-paying jobs. The Basic Food Employment and Training (BFET) program is a state-run initiative that receives federal funds. It offers people receiving assistance through the Supplemental Nutritional Access Program, also known as SNAP, access to job training and education so they can earn a living wage and become self-sufficient.

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