Citing census data she says show more than 700,000 New Yorkers living in poverty, U.S. Senator Kirsten Gillibrand, member of the Senate Agriculture Committee, called for more federal funding for the nation’s food stamp and emergency food programs to aid impoverished New York families and underserved communities. For many families trying to survive on Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) benefits or monthly food stamps, their benefits only last until the third week of the month while many soup kitchens and food pantries continue to experience chronic food shortages. Gillibrand proposed an increase in SNAP benefits levels under the 2012 Farm Bill’s Nutrition title, increasing monthly assistance for a family of four by an estimated $144 and also pushed for more emergency aid for food banks running out of meals for hungry children and communities.