National Immigration Law Center
Sign up for email updates.

Our mission is to defend & advance the rights & opportunities of low-income immigrants and their family members.

Resources for Nutrition Assistance Advocacy


Nutrition Assistance for Immigrant Children

This issue brief provides a brief explanation of SNAP (the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program, formerly food stamps), a brief history of immigrant children’s eligibility for SNAP, a section about the demographics of the children of immigrants, and a section about children’s eligibility in light of the “lawful provisional status” proposed in 2013 immigration reform blueprints.

State Online SNAP Applications May Not Ask Unnecessary Questions Regarding Immigration Status or Social Security Numbers, FNS Reaffirms

From a review of online application forms in 26 states, FNS found many that asked for immigration status–related information not needed to establish the eligibility of individuals seeking assistance. As a result, on Feb. 18, 2011, FNS issued GUIDANCE advising state agencies of changes needed to online application forms to reduce barriers to access by eligible applicants in immigrant families and prevent violations of Title VI of the Civil Rights Act of 1964.

Facts About Immigrants and the Food Stamp Program

State-Funded Food Assistance Programs

Roby Amendment Would Deny Supplemental Nutrition Assistance (SNAP) to Millions of Citizen Children

An amendment to the House farm bill was offered by Rep. Martha Roby (R-AL) to prevent millions of low-income U.S. citizen children from securing this critical nutrition assistance program. It would have required that all members of the household provide proof of citizenship or immigration status, even if they were not seeking benefits for themselves. In families with different statuses, such a provision would prevent even eligible individuals from applying for much-needed nutrition assistance. Currently, states may not deny SNAP to eligible individuals based on the status of other family members who are not seeking services.

Related resources:

Advocates urge President Bush to take the lead in opposing food stamp cuts targeting immigrants

(Letter sent to President Bush) (PDF, 12/6/05) (la carta traducida a español)