(WBNG) -- United States Senator Kirsten Gillibrand is calling on her colleagues to expand SNAP benefits in the next wave of federal relief packages.
The Senator wants to expand eligibility for the federal assistance program by waiving work requirements for the program.
Additionally, she's proposing a 15% increase of the maximum SNAP benefits.
While Senator Gillibrand stresses the importance of helping those in need, she also points out potential economic growth that SNAP brings to the table.
"It's estimated that every dollar distributed through SNAP will put one dollar and fifty four cents back into the economy. That's one of the most powerful force multipliers the government has. As the world faces the worst economic emergency we've seen since the great depression, those benefits, and the growth they create are urgently needed," Gillibrand explained.
Before the COVID-19 pandemic, roughly 1 in 7 New Yorkers, or about 2.6 million people received SNAP benefits.