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Cuts to Food Stamps Program

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Millions of Americans who depend on food stamps to feed their families will see less assistance starting today.

$5 billion in cuts to the program went into effect overnight, which means less money for food.

Madonna Chlebik of Waco has received food stamps on and off for many years and says the cuts worry her.

"It saddens me because I know there's already enough people on the streets and you got kids that are homeless," Chlebik said. "What are they gonna do?"

Caritas of Waco is a one-stop-shop for families who need assistance.

Program Director Esther Morales says a family of four will go from receiving $668.00 a month to $632.00, a cut back that won't be easy for her clients.

"The impact of food changes peoples lives," Morales said. "To not be able to be nutritionally healthy, it eliminates them from looking for employment and providing for their children."

The food pantry at Caritas helps provide assistance on top of SNAP benefits, but now that those benefits are going down...demand for the food will go up.

Morales is helping people understand the cuts and giving them lists of additional food pantries that can help them get more groceries.

Meanwhile, Chlebik is hoping that law makers in Washington won't pull even more funding from the program.

"If we don't all come together and they don't come together...then we lose," Chlebik said. "They can shut the government down, but where does that leave us?"

Democrats and Republicans have already both proposed more cuts to the program, it's just a matter of how much.

Over 35,000 people in McLennan County received food stamps in October, which amounts to about $4 million in benefit payments.

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