Washington, D.C. — While many impacts of the COVID-19 pandemic have begun to ease through the economic recovery, food insecurity remains unacceptably high for millions of Americans, with 21.7 million households reporting food scarcity in the first two weeks of March 2022.
A new report from the Center for American Progress outlines how food insecurity has adversely affected Americans during the pandemic and how recent economic factors have decreased food access and affordability. While federal responses to COVID-19—such as expanded food benefits—spurred economic recovery and helped households by boosting budgets, upcoming expirations to temporary federal investments would cut people off from this assistance as soon as this summer. Low-income Americans, along with other vulnerable groups, face disproportionate consequences in the face of this food insecurity.
In response to unacceptably high food insecurity, the report calls for the extension of pandemic-related food and nutritional support expansions. It also outlines a set of comprehensive policies and priorities for the federal government that would ease hardship for food-insecure Americans through modernizing and bolstering food and nutrition programs to better reflect today’s economic reality and emerging crisis.
“Congress needs to act quickly to address this situation,” said Arohi Pathak, the director of policy for the Poverty to Prosperity team at CAP and the co-author of the report. “In a modern economy, and especially in the wealthiest country in the world, no one should struggle to put food on the table.”
Read the report: “Fighting Hunger: How Congress Should Combat Food Insecurity Among Low-Income Americans” by Arohi Pathak and Rose Khattar
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