Newark's mayor Cory Booker said he would live on food stamps and he’s doing just that! For 1 week he'll be living on $30 of groceries. This amount is equivalent to the budget provided to people participating in the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP), formerly known as food stamps, in the State of New Jersey.
His goals according to him are, “to raise awareness and understanding of food insecurity; reduce the stigma of SNAP participation; elevate innovative local and national food justice initiatives and food policy; and, amplify compassion for individuals and communities in need of assistance. Over the next seven days, I plan to highlight the voices of people involved in local food policy, the SNAP program, and other related initiatives. “
Now here’s a man who has a point and he’s out there to prove it. No matter how difficult it is for him. He is dauntless in his quest but he is not without fear. His biggest dread: lack of caffeine.
He admitted as much:
And that is exactly what happened:
It isn't in the budget. Day one, no caffeine... RT @newarkpulse: Where are you getting your coffee?— Cory Booker (@CoryBooker) December 4, 2012
About his second day, he writes on LinkedIn, “The second day on the #SNAPChallenge, I ate salad for breakfast, a can of peas and corn mixed together for lunch, and cauliflower, broccoli and a sweat potato for dinner. And today it hit me – the first stages of caffeine withdrawal. Not being able to stop and drop a few dollars for a Venti coffee or Diet Mountain Dew is really raising my consciousness about the food choices I often take for granted.”
He also realizes how difficult and challenging it is for people who have to live on it without a choice.
Lunch today was a can of corn and a can of peas mixed together. I'm starting to feel the caffeine withdrawal.— Cory Booker (@CoryBooker) December 5, 2012
The challenge for many families is access to stores that sell such food at affordable prices. Couldn't do this where I live @mavis100dollars— Cory Booker (@CoryBooker) December 6, 2012
The challenge may prove worthwhile as he is learning new things every day, especially how he used to take things for granted before. Now, that’s a lesson we all need!