LAUREL, Del. - Billions of dollars are being cut from the federal food stamp program.
Starting Friday, one in seven Americans will have less money for food. The Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program, or SNAP, will also impact 900,000 veterans and their families.
"It will affect veterans and the general population," said John Marinello of Laurel.
Marinello served in the U.S. Navy and retired in 1964. It was the beginning of the Vietnam War. He says times have changed for veterans.
"Veterans were taken care of at that time. I thought my transition from military service to civilian service was well handled. I was able to find employment without many problems. But if you compare that with what's happening today it's the opposite," said Marinello.
Marinello, who does not receive SNAP benefits, says one reason times are hard for veterans is because the jobs aren't readily available after they leave service.
SNAP program benefits are set to expire for more than 47 million lower-income people. It's the first across-the-board reduction in the program's history. A family of three will lose $29 a month. For others, the loss could range anywhere from $11 to $36 a month for a family of four.
"Really I don't know what the answer is. I can only speculate on what the symptoms are and I don't know where (the government) will get this money to maintain these programs," said Marinello.
Marinello says this is just one more thing veterans are having to deal with.
Earlier this year, the government shutdown forced a discontinuation of benefits to families of fallen military members.
"They're arguing more than they are answering the problems," said Marinello.
It's a problem, Marinello says, should not be on the shoulders of veterans who put their lives on the lint to protect this country.
A bill from the GOP-controlled House proposes to cut an additional $4 billion from the food stamp program under a wide-ranging farm bill.