SNAP Access: Closing the “SNAP Gap”

The Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) offers nutrition assistance to millions of eligible, low-income individuals and families and provides economic benefits to communities. SNAP is the largest program in the domestic hunger safety net.

Close the “SNAP Gap” and Create a Common Application Portal

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Take Action:
  • Become a “Close the SNAP Gap” Coalition Supporter or sign up for action alerts here.

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Click on the image above to view SNAP Gap numbers by district

The Problem:
  • The SNAP gap refers to the 680,000 people who are receiving Mass Health and likely eligible for SNAP, but aren’t receiving benefits.[1] (Check out local SNAP Gap Map by city and town, here.
  • Mass Health and SNAP, as well as many other safety-net programs, have separate application processes that ask for the same basic information, duplicating efforts and creating more work for both the state and clients.

The Solution:
  • Create a common application portal to let low income households apply for MassHealth and SNAP at the same time. This lays the foundation for a common application portal for safety-net benefits, reducing duplicate data collection, and increasing efficiency of state government.

Benefits of closing the SNAP Gap and creating a Common Application Portal:
  • Streamline and improve the efficiency of the application process for core food, health, housing and other safety-net programs for Massachusetts residents.
  • Increase access to 100% federally-funded nutrition dollars for low income households.
  • Help more low income residents meet their basic needs and lower healthcare costs.
  • Boost automatic certification for children for free school meals.
  • Generate $2 billion in economic stimulus to the state and local economy.
  • Increase food access for over 100,000 Massachusetts elders.

[1] Data: September 2016: EOHHS reported 1.8 million Masshealth recipients under 200% FPL, November DTA data shows 763K SNAP recipients. MLRI determined 80% of the 1.8M MassHealth recipients “likely SNAP eligible,” excluding long term care, ineligible students, 3 month time limit, immigrant ineligibles.

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