Opening remarks: Kevin Concannon, undersecretary for food, nutrition, and consumer services, U.S. Department of Agriculture

The Urban Institute and Feeding America present a special video webcast designed to elevate public dialogue about the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) and the food safety net. Spotlighting the kickoff portion of a daylong symposium, the webcast, moderated by Jason DeParle of the New York Times, will present:

  • poverty and hunger overview, with Jim Ziliak, University of Kentucky;
  • SNAP history—the ebb and flow of policy and the economy, with Steve Carlson, Food and Nutrition Service, USDA;
  • factors leading to recent SNAP trends, with Margaret Andrews, Economic Research Service, USDA;
  • the role of SNAP in reducing poverty, with Dean Jolliffe, World Bank;
  • the effect of food prices on food security, with Christian Gregory, Economic Research Service, USDA; and
  • SNAP participation, with Carol Trippe, Mathematica Policy Research.

The symposium’s proceedings, made possible by support from the Howard G. Buffett Foundation, will be synthesized in a policy brief this summer. The discussions will also examine SNAP’s effects on hunger, obesity, and diabetes; SNAP service delivery innovations; and family coping strategies.

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