|Carson, Moore Bill Would Expand Afterschool Meal Programs Nationwide|
July 24, 2009
Each day, 3.1 million children receive nutritious meals and snacks through the CACFP. However, under current law, only 10 states are authorized through this program to provide evening meals to children 18 years-old and younger.
The AFTERSchool Meals Act would make all states eligible to participate in the full afterschool meal program. Schools could receive reimbursement for serving evening meals through either the CACFP or through the Russell School Lunch/Breakfast Program. Senators Debbie Stabenow (D-Mich.) and Richard Lugar (R-Ind.) have introduced similar legislation in the Senate.
“Children should never have to go hungry because economic hardship prevents their parents from purchasing nutritious food,” said Congressman Carson. “Tragically, as the unemployment rate continues to increase, this is exactly what is happening in households across our country. Everyday, millions of children fail to reach their full academic and personal potential because they do not receive the meals they so desperately need.
“Today, children in only a handful of states see the benefit of the afterschool meals program, meaning millions of needy students are being left behind. That’s why I am so proud to join Congresswoman Moore in introducing this legislation which will give public schools the opportunity to begin providing the nutritious meals that will help our young people perform to their highest potential.”
“Times are tough for American families, so tough that children are going hungry because their parents have lost their jobs, or are working very long hours at more than one job and just barely scraping by,” Congresswoman Moore said. “Between 2000 and 2007, the country has seen a 40 percent increase in the number of people living in the hungriest households. This is very troubling, particularly for children who can’t get the nutritious meals that growing boys and girls really need.
“Children who eat three healthy meals a day are so much more successful in the classroom. We need our students learning reading, writing, math and science – not distracted because they’re not getting enough to eat. If our public schools are going to prepare children to excel, we’ve got to do everything we can inside and outside the classroom to make that success possible. By making sure our kids can eat three meals a day, the AFTERSchool Meals Act will take our students one step closer to achieving excellence.”
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