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LAS CRUCES, NM – Dr. Gavin Clarkson, a former Trump administration official and business law professor, filed a lawsuit today against New Mexico State University alleging wrongful termination, breach of contract, denial of due process, defamation, creation of a hostile work environment, and racial and religious discrimination because he is a conservative pro-life Christian and also an enrolled tribal member running as a Republican for Congress.

Among other things, Clarkson's suit seeks a temporary restraining order enjoining NMSU from processing his termination until all internal appeal processes have been exhausted.

Op-Ed on work requirements
May 15, 2018 Silver City, NM

The Southwest New Mexico Regional Food Policy Council was established in January 2014, with the purpose of increasing access to healthy, affordable food and supporting local agriculture. The council also advocates for local and state policy that helps ensure those in New Mexico to have enough healthy food to eat. Due to this goal there are concerns regarding proposed changes to the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP). SNAP plays a critical role in addressing hunger and food insecurity in our state and is the first line of defense against hunger for the working poor. The program is part of the USDA’s Farm Bill and it is up for re-authorization this month.

SNAP, previously known as the Food Stamp Program, is a government program designed to assist low income families to pay for food. The program provides participants with a small monthly stipend on a debit card that can only be used to buy food. To qualify, most households have-to pass a gross income test, a net income test, or both. Currently, most able-bodied adults under the age of 50 must also work to qualify. The USDA is proposing to increase this upper age limit to 60 years old and sanctioning those who refuse to work a 20-hour week by taking away their benefits. In addition, time limits are proposed for those receiving SNAP benefits following a period of un-employment. Currently, SNAP guidelines allow states to have the flexibility to temporarily waive work requirements for areas of the state during periods of elevated unemployment. This ability is under review and may be eliminated entirely.

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