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A Pledge to Make History, Again

November 10, 2008

At the end of an historic election season, Americans are calling upon President-elect Obama to again make history by ending hunger in America once and for all. The Obama-Biden anti-hunger plan combines measures that strengthen federal nutrition assistance programs and increase the long-term food purchasing power of low-income Americans by raising the minimum wage and providing affordable health insurance to all Americans.

President-elect Obama would utilize funds from his proposed $25 billion State Growth Fund to prevent further state funding cuts to nutrition programs, whose ability of local agencies to adequately feed food-insecure families has been recently jeopardized in the name of . In the past year alone, New York State has cut nutrition funding by 22%, even as individual soup kitchens and food pantries face the crisis of sharply increasing demand. The Fund would help safeguard state governments against negative economic pressure, while alleviating some of the burden of increased taxation otherwise needed to cover state budget costs.

The President-elect has also pledged to end child hunger in America by 2015 through a series of initiatives, including: offering free school meals to all children living in homes that receive Food Stamp/Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) benefits, expanding the federal Summer Meals program and increasing support for community food banks.

New York Times columnist Paul Krugman is among the many Americans who have urged President-elect Obama to not only stick to the optimism of his campaign platform, but to tend towards overestimating the need of the American people in the interest of creating long-term economic stability. Says Krugman: “My advice to the Obama people is to figure out how much help they think the economy needs, then add 50 percent. It’s much better, in a depressed economy, to err on the side of too much stimulus than on the side of too little.” For food insecure Americans, it is this kind of concrete commitment that will offer real hope for a future free from the specter of hunger.

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2 Comments leave one →
  1. dravid permalink
    November 28, 2008 9:51 am

    Education is the best tool to unlock the vicious and self-perpetuating cycle of hunger and poverty. By providing school meals for the underprivileged children we have to promote and encourage education among them.

    As you will understand, this is a tremendous task and I know one NGO in India which is doing almost similar work. I think they are feeding almost 1 million underprivileged children everyday, through out the country.

    I think we all have to support them for the work they are doing for those who are in need.If you want to know more about them log on to http://www.akshayapatra.org.
    Support them its our social Responsibility.

  2. NYCCAH permalink
    December 4, 2008 7:35 pm

    Thanks for your comment. I think it’s important to acknowledge that proper nutrition is universally necessary for proper education. Many Americans don’t realize that hunger remains a problem for many children in their own cities and towns. Fortunately, the US government has the means to make free breakfasts available to all students, we just need to develop the political will to make these citywide initiatives a national reality.

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