Washington, D.C. — Melissa Boteach, Vice President of the Poverty to Prosperity Program at the Center for American Progress, released the following statement regarding Rep. Rosa DeLauro’s (D-CT) introduction of a bipartisan bill to curb the practice known as lunch shaming:
No child should fear being stigmatized or discriminated against because their family can’t afford a meal. This week’s bipartisan legislation in an important step in calling attention to a practice that has no place in America’s schools.
As reports have shown, schools often throw away food, force students to eat less nutritious meals, force them to wear wristbands, or withhold food altogether—in an effort to humiliate students for unpaid bills.
There is a better way. Conversations regarding school lunch debt should be had with parents, not children. Congress should act quickly to expand access to school lunch and put an end this shameful practice.
For more information on this topic or to speak to an expert, contact Devon Kearns at firstname.lastname@example.org or 202.641.6290.