Congress Must Immediately Pass Food, Economic Relief, say Advocates

One in six U.S. families with children are reporting that they didn’t have enough to eat i
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Photo: Hunger Free America

From left to right: Children enjoying federally-funded summer meals, and vehicles lining up at food bank.

On May 16, 2020, the House of Representatives passed a large-scale, long-term, economic relief bill, including robust food aid. As Hunger Free America has continually pointed out, in the 216 days since then, despite the worst domestic hunger crisis in modern times, the G.O.P. has blocked enactment of such aid. One in six U.S. families with children are reporting that they didn’t have enough to eat in the prior week.

Reports indicate that Congress may be close to passing an aid package with a brief but significant boost in food aid through SNAP (formerly called food stamps) and other food assistance programs, along with some economic aid for low-income Americans.

In response to reports that many conservatives in Congress may be blocking such a bill because it provides too much aid and that a few progressives might be objecting to the bill because it provides too little assistance, Joel Berg, CEO of Hunger Free America, issued the following statement:

“In the greatest hunger crisis in modern times, we can’t let the perfect be the enemy of the good. While I agree with progressives who say the current aid package being considered is too little and too late, hungry Americans desperately need this life-saving aid right now.

"Given the mass spending spree that the GOP has engaged in on behalf of the wealthiest over the past four years, their objections to aiding hungry Americans, justified on the grounds of so-called fiscal responsibility, are beyond absurd and infuriating. Congress should immediately pass a package with a bump in food and economic aid.

"Then, in January, the Biden/Harris Administration and Congress should immediately consider a broader, long-lasting, food package. Tens of millions of Americans are about to drown in a tidal wave of hunger. They can’t want for perfection when they are struggling for their lives.”

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