Bipartisan legislation seeks to bridge the summer meal gap for students facing food insecurity

Published: Apr. 6, 2022 at 10:49 AM EDT
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WASHINGTON (Gray DC) - Keeping children fed throughout the summer is a priority for Ohio Senator Sherrod Brown.

“In many places in my state, kids eat better Monday through Friday during the school year than they do weekends in the school year and the summer, Thanksgiving and Christmas.”

Brown along with 51 of his colleagues are hoping to silent the stomach grumblings of school-aged children facing food insecurity.

Specifically, in the Buckeye state 1.5 million people are facing hunger.

Of that number, more that 448,000 are children.

That’s according to the hunger-relief organization Feeding America which breaks those numbers down to one in eight people and one in six children who may not get enough to eat in Ohio.

To help meet this need, Brown is supporting the bipartisan Support Kids Not Red Tape Act.

If passed, it would extend the Department of Agriculture’s school meal options from June 30, 2022 to September 30, 2023.

Brown says this legislation will help lessen the hunger issues caused by the pandemic.

“Some school districts they weren’t getting lunches because schools were closed down, and then in the summer it got even harder,” he said.

Brown’s office says the USDA originally requested this extension in the Omnibus spending bill, but it didn’t pass.

A vote on this bill has yet to be scheduled.

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