New York (January 22, 2021) – Noreen Springstead, executive director, WhyHunger, issued the following statement regarding President Biden’s executive order aimed at expanding access to federal food assistance – expected to be signed on Friday – which will provide critical aid for Americans facing food insecurity:
“The quickest way to salve the massive spike in hunger is to move money quickly in the form of SNAP and P-EBT into the hands of people who need it most. This will ensure that they can nourish their families and spend those federal dollars at local supermarkets, corner stores, and retail shops that touch every corner of American life, thereby meeting people’s immediate food needs while pumping federal dollars into local economies (which has a multiplier effect on GDP of roughly $1.50 for every SNAP dollar). While we need this massive balm of increased government stimulus right now, we know the long-term fix is to ensure that people always have adequate access to nutritious food and that jobs pay a living wage in order to guarantee nutritious food is a human right.
Right now, SNAP and P-EBT are the best tools in the toolbox and we need to make sure they are funded at levels in line with today’s costs and that everyone who is eligible is aware of them and using them fully. P-EBT is a stunningly good innovation from the federal government that meets a critical need for children who are not eating in school. The challenge is not enough people know about P-EBT and how it can be used as a lifeline for kids who are missing critical nutrition while they are learning remotely at home.
The Biden administration has a huge opportunity to address the root causes of hunger head on, from racism to economic injustice to a transformation of our food and agriculture policy. While these immediate actions are critical, we must also be bold and call for bi-partisan support to truly end hunger and not just alleviate it in the short term.”
Available to anyone in need, the WhyHunger Hotline at 1-800-5-HUNGRY and the Find Food database helps veterans, seniors, families and food insecure individuals find food in their neighborhoods as well as government programs like SNAP year around and in times of crisis. In 2020, WhyHunger helped connect over 1 million people in the U.S. to nutritious food.
Founded in 1975 by the late Harry Chapin and radio DJ Bill Ayres, WhyHunger believes a world without hunger is possible. We provide critical resources to support grassroots movements and fuel community solutions rooted in social, environmental, racial and economic justice. A four-star rated charity by Charity Navigator, with highest ratings for excellence in fiscal management accountability and transparency, WhyHunger is working to end hunger and advance the human right to nutritious food in the U.S. and around the world. 86 cents of every dollar raised goes directly to programmatic work. Learn more at whyhunger.org and follow us on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram.