HB 420--Lifting the Ban on Food Stamps for Drug Felons

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Celia Cole /(512) 320-0222 x110

May 5, 2005

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The Center for Public Policy Priorities urges your support of HB 420 by Representative Naishtat. The lifetime ban on food stamps for people convicted of a drug felony harms Texas communities. By taking away the supports former prisoners need to make the transition from prison, we encourage recidivism, break up families, and perpetuate a discriminatory system of imprisoning the poor, who are disproportionately people of color. Texas also loses out on federal funds that could be used to help people with drug felon convictions reestablish themselves as productive, lawful members of our society. Without the support of Food Stamps, these people must rely on state, local, or privately funded services, which are limited.