A nonprofit publication of the Kentucky Center for Public Service Journalism

Study: Nutrition education for low-income people in eight Southeast states results in healthier diets

By Melissa Patrick Kentucky Health News A little education goes a long way when it comes to helping people with limited budgets eat healthier and not run out of food before the end of the month. So says a study by the Public Health Institute’s Center for Wellness and Nutrition, published in the Journal of Nutritional Science. It found that residents with low incomes in eight Southeastern states,...

Food insecure in Kentucky? Not if UK Cooperative Extension has a say in battle against hunger

By Carol Lea Spence University of Kentucky As the COVID-19 pandemic swept through the state, sickening people, shuttering businesses, closing schools and temporarily crimping the food supply, a lot of people found themselves suddenly wondering how they would be able to feed their families. Without any warning, more Kentuckians than usual found themselves among the “food insecure.” To be food insecure...

More older adults in Kentucky are struggling with food insecurity as coronavirus pandemic drags on

By Nadia Ramlagan Public News Service Kentucky has the highest rate in the nation of food insecurity among older adults, and that’s likely to worsen amid the COVID-19 pandemic, according to a new report released by the group Feeding America. Using the most recent available data from 2018, researchers found that nearly 7% of Kentuckians over 60 and around 17% of adults age 50 to 59 were food...

Legal Aid of the Bluegrass reminding Kentuckians of changes to SNAP during coronavirus pandemic

In an attempt to counteract the devastating effects of the coronavirus pandemic, Kentucky has recently announced some important changes to the SNAP Program. The Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) is a federally funded food assistance program that provides vital nutritional support to people all across the United States. Kentucky recently received an emergency allotment waiver. This means...

Analysis: Investing in education for Kentucky’s single mother students will strengthen state’s economy

Kentucky’s economy is changing. This year, an estimated 60 percent of jobs will require post-secondary education. Accordingly, Kentucky has set an ambitious goal to graduate 60 percent of Kentuckians with a college credential by 2030. To meet this goal, Kentucky must recruit and graduate “non-traditional” students, who are often part-time students, working adults and/or parents and encompass...

Rural Blog: SNAP rules target able-bodied people without dependents, but may have ripple effects

Changes to the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program could have a substantial ripple effect in a small town. In Letcher County, pop. 25,000, the new rules could cost up to 400 residents their SNAP benefits and could potentially affect their families, Sam Adams reports for The Mountain Eagle in Whitesburg. The changes, set to take affect April 1, are expected to cost more than 3 million Americans...

Center for Economic Policy report shows time limits, other challenges hinder of SNAP E&T program

More than 10,000 Kentuckians have lost food assistance in recent months as a result of the state’s decision to expire time limit waivers for some Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) participants. A new report from the Kentucky Center for Economic Policy (KCEP), “Time Limits and Other Challenges Hinder Success of Kentucky’s SNAP E&T Program,” shows the state’s recent expansion...

Federal officials say Kentuckians’ SNAP benefits will be protected as government shutdown drags on

By Mary Kuhlman Public News Service Federal officials say fallout from the government shutdown will not impact the food security of families already living on the edge in Kentucky and other states. There were concerns that funding for the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program or SNAP could dry up after January, but the Department of Agriculture announced this week that it is working with states...

10,000 Kentuckians face new struggle to provide for families as SNAP benefits work requirements begin

Mary Kuhlman Public News Service Putting food on the table has become a much bigger struggle this year for tens of thousands of Kentuckians. The state began reinstating work requirements for the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program on a county-by-county basis back in February. And since May, new data shows one-in-five people subject to the requirement have since lost SNAP assistance. More than...

Commentary: Kentucky organizations urge protection of Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program

By Dustin Pugel Policy Analyst, Kentucky Center for Economic Policy One in seven Kentuckians has food on their table in part thanks to the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP). SNAP lifts 164,000 Kentuckians, including 73,000 children, out of poverty. It sends nearly $1 billion a year to grocery stores and our state’s economy, and injects even more into our local communities during hard...

New poll shows voters don’t support cuts to Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program

By Mary Kuhlman Public News Service Congress is considering cuts to a key hunger-fighting program, a move that a new survey shows wouldn’t be popular among voters. The Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program provides food assistance to about 650,000 Kentuckians, and a new poll by Greenberg Quinlan Rosner Research reveals that nearly two-thirds of people said they were opposed to reducing SNAP...

Critics say new Medicaid rules will result in greater loss of coverage than Bevin administration estimates

Changes in the state Medicaid program, to be phased in starting July 1, would lead to many more people losing health coverage than the state has estimated, 43 academic experts say in a friend-of-the-court brief filed in a lawsuit challenging federal officials’ approval of the changes. The experts argue that the changes are “likely to remove at least twice as many beneficiaries in the first...

Kentucky simplifies Child Care Assistance Program application process with online service benefind

It’s now easier for Kentucky families to apply for child care assistance funds. The Cabinet for Health and Family Services (CHFS) Department for Community Based Services (DCBS) has moved eligibility services for its Child Care Assistance Program (CCAP) into benefind, the public assistance web portal used by customers to apply for other state assistance programs. The online service, benefind, is already...

State agencies collaborate to provide employment, training opportunities to SNAP recipients

Kentuckians who receive Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) benefits and are eligible for the federally funded Employment and Training (E&T) program will now receive assistance from Kentucky Career Centers to meet education and employment training needs. To better serve the people of Kentucky, several agencies in the state government created a new system for SNAP recipients to access...

State makes job training programs available to help residents maintain SNAP benefits eligibility

Participation in Kentucky’s Employment and Training (E&T) Program recently changed for certain adults receiving Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) food benefits in 20 counties, allowing the state to expand access to E&T services to more SNAP recipients statewide. Effective October 1, 2017, able-bodied adults in these 20 counties who are between the ages of 18 and 49 and have...

Study finds Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program funding insufficient for a healthy diet

By Melissa Patrick Kentucky Health News The Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program, formerly known as food stamps, only covers 43 to 60 percent of the cost of the federal nutrition guidelines, according to a study by researchers who say policymakers should consider that as they propose deep cuts to the program. “Even though SNAP is not designed to cover all of the cost of food – it’s meant...

Kentucky hunger problem not getting better as debate continues over assistance program

  By Tim Thornberry KyForward correspondent   While debate goes on in Washington over proposed spending cuts to the nation’s largest food assistance program, legislators in Kentucky recently heard of how great the food insecurity issue is closer to home.   Tamara Sandberg with the Kentucky Association of Food Banks told the Interim Joint Committee on Agriculture that funding is needed...