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Saturday, June 15, 2024

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The Supreme Court throws out a Trump-era ban on gun bump stocks; a look at how social media algorithms and Shakespearian villains have in common; and states receive federal funding to clean up legacy mine pollution.

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The Supreme Court for now protects access to abortion drug mifepristone, while Senate Republicans block a bill protecting access to in-vitro fertilization. Wisconsin's Supreme Court bans mobile voting sites, and colleges deal with funding cuts as legislatures target diversity programs.

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As summer nears, America's newest and largest international dark sky sanctuary beckons, rural job growth is up, but full recovery remains elusive, rural Americans living in prison towns support a transition, while birth control is more readily available in rural areas.

A focus on the Farm Bill for Latino Advocacy Week in D.C.

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Friday, May 24, 2024   

It's Latino Advocacy Week in Washington, D.C., and leaders in the Hispanic community are pushing for improvements in the upcoming Farm Bill.

The group met with the Chamber of Commerce, and with members of Congress, culminating with an event at the White House.

Hispanic Access Foundation climate manager Hilda Berganza said it will be crucial to fully fund the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program or SNAP, known as Cal Fresh in California and formerly known as food stamps.

"As of 2024, 32% of those applying for SNAP are actually in rural areas," she said, "which is a big shift from what we've seen in the last few years - where it's usually within the cities, especially with the cost of living going up everywhere."

The $1.5 trillion version of the Farm Bill being promoted by House Republicans, which is currently being heard in committee, would slash $30 billion from SNAP over the next 10 years. Funding for SNAP and other nutrition programs makes up 80% of the Farm Bill. When it's finalized, the Farm Bill will cover the next five years.

Berganza said 78% of people working in the agriculture industry are Latino, and climate change is making their jobs much harder.

"We want to make sure that we promote climate-smart agricultural initiatives," she said, "and the Farm Bill Risk Management Program to ensure financial security for farmers facing extreme weather, including droughts, floods and heat waves."

Advocates are also asking lawmakers to prioritize the Conservation Stewardship and Environmental Quality Incentives programs, both of which integrate land and wildlife habitat conservation into farming practices to support biodiversity and a more sustainable agriculture system.

Disclosure: Hispanic Access Foundation contributes to our fund for reporting on Climate Change/Air Quality, Environment, Human Rights/Racial Justice, Livable Wages/Working Families. If you would like to help support news in the public interest, click here.


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