Lawmakers introduce bill to stop soda purchases with Bridge Card - WNEM TV 5

Lawmakers introduce bill to stop soda purchases with Bridge Cards

Posted: Updated:
Stock photo Stock photo
LANSING, MI (WNEM) -

Michigan lawmakers have introduced a bill to ban Bridge Card users from using the funds to buy soda.

The bill, introduced by State Reps. Beau LaFave and Ben Frederick, would amend the social welfare act so users cannot use the cash assistance to purchase soda.

Frederick said he wants to start the conversation about the intent of taxpayer supported programs. He wants to have users think about healthier options.

"I'm hopeful we can spark a real discussion with the federal government about what foods are a part of this program," Frederick said.

He said buying soda goes against the purpose of the assistance program.

"I grew up myself in poverty and received food assistance and had an offer of healthy options. So thinking about snacks, pop and other items I'd like to put forth changes there so taxpayers can be sure those dollars truly go toward meaningful items for those in need," he said.

The proposed bill only addresses an exemption for soda, but Frederick hopes to soon apply the same idea against snack food. The goal being healthy and nutritious food would be bought with the card.

"I mean, I have a Bridge Card and I use it to buy pop and stuff," said Nelson Call, resident.

He said he doesn't think twice about using the card for soda, but can understand why the bill may be a good idea.

"I'd be kind of upset, but you gotta do what you gotta do," Call said.

Others said they hope the bill promotes healthy eating, especially for those who need a little help financially.

"Considering soda can be so damaging, especially to children's health. I don't think assistance that should be for daily needs and nutrition should be allowed to purchase something so damaging to your health and well-being," said Leah Gagnon, resident.

Frederick said some in support of the bill also hope it discourages dishonest use of the Bridge Cards.

"We do have some stories of abuse that does take place where people dump out soda and cash in the deposits," Frederick said.

The bill was just introduced to the State House and still has a long way to go.

Click here to read the bill.

Copyright 2017 WNEM (Meredith Corporation). All rights reserved.

Powered by Frankly
WNEM
Powered by WorldNow CNN
All content © 2018, WNEM; Saginaw, MI. (A Meredith Corporation Station) . All Rights Reserved.
For more information on this site, please read our Privacy Policy, and Terms of Service, and Ad Choices.