Grocery Shopping
Shopping habits in predominantly black and brown communities have seen an extreme downturn kc0uvb/Pixabay

In March of this year, it was announced that there would be cutbacks on the amount of money offered by SNAP recipients all over the country. Now brown and black communities are feeling the sting.

El Paso, Texas is a community with 82% of its total population being comprised of Hispanics/Latinxs, according to a report from the U.S Census Bureau, and the community is suffering due to a lack of funds for food.

Mata's Fruit Store has been one of the most commonly visited shops in all of El Paso thanks to the incredible quality of the meat-based products and excellent prices. But even a local shop such as this has seen the daily ingress of traffic.

Carlos Lopez, an employee of Mata's Fruit Store who has worked for the store for over 10 years states, "Nowadays we only have a couple of people entering the store. For most of the day, the store is completely empty."

Mata's Fruit Store has been a staple for many years and according to Carlos "(the store) would have hundreds of costumers on any given day. But now people can't go out and buy food because their SNAP benefits have been cut."

Thanks to last Father's Day, the store saw an influx of customers as it used to obtain in former days, but once it was over the reality of the situation once more dawned on the small store.

The cutbacks on SNAP are not only affecting those who used the benefits on a daily basis but also local businesses that provide food and toiletries for the average population. "I have seen people be fired on the same day that they were hired because management just doesn't know how to handle this crisis," Carlos added.

Black and brown communities are much more vulnerable when government funding is cut.

Supporting local and small businesses is the best way to go, this way, the money will remain in the community.

And it is also not a bad idea to donate any food that would otherwise go to waste.

Food for thought, at least the mind shall be full.

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