Indiana plans to reduce benefits next month for the more than 900,000 people enrolled in the food stamp program. Unfortunately, this strategy could put many Hoosier families in a bind right before the holiday season.

Starting on November 1, the federal Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program, which is often referred to as food stamps, will lower benefits for a single person by $11 per month and $36 for a family of four.

This deduction in food stamp benefits isn’t related to the government shutdown, says Emily Bryant, executive director of Feeding Indiana’s Hungry. The cuts are because federal stimulus money issued in 2009 is almost depleted.

“It’s something that we’ve seen coming for some time but not knowing whether there was a farm bill that would be passed or a budget that would be passed that would extend these enhanced benefits,” said Bryant. “A lot of folks kind of have waited until towards the end to realize that nothing is going to change.”

Individuals and families requiring additional nutritional assistance are encouraged to visit their local food bank.