Washington, D.C. – Today, Congressman Tom Emmer (MN-06) sent a letter to United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) Secretary Tom Vilsack requesting information regarding the Administration’s efforts to support farmer mental health through the ongoing drought.
Specifically, Congressman Emmer asked for information pertaining to specific resources the USDA is offering to farmers impacted by the drought. He also requested a regional report detailing the results of the Farm and Ranch Stress Assistance Network (FRSAN) – which Congressman Emmer successfully reauthorized in the 2018 Farm Bill and has secured funding for each fiscal year. Finally, he asked for details about the current funding USDA has dispensed for FRSAN, and how much funding remains.
“When we reauthorized the Farm and Ranch Stress Assistance Network, we ensured that farm families and rural Americans would have better access to mental health resources. However, the work doesn’t end there, and our farmers have experienced increased stress due to supply chain disruptions caused by COVID-19, which was made impossible to recover from due to the drought that followed,” Emmer said.
Emmer concluded, “Over four million Minnesotans live and work in areas currently experiencing severe drought, which has had devastating impacts on the agriculture industry. I am hopeful that the Biden Administration has deployed all the resources Congress has allocated to assist our farmers through this difficult time.”
Read Congressman Emmer’s letter here.