Tuesday, November 17, 2015

Advocacy Action Alert: Child Hunger Bills

ACTION NEEDED: Senator Justin Alfond proposed 3 child hunger bills for the upcoming legislative session. Good Shepherd Food Bank supports all of these bills, which will help reduce child hunger in Maine, and we are hopeful that Legislative Council will pass them when Senator Alfond makes his appeal this week.

You can help! Please contact the members of Legislative Council by Nov. 19 and urge them to support these 3 bills. Child hunger is a devastating problem in Maine and all of these bills provide practical and direct ways to feed our kids.   

You can find brief summaries of the bills below. Contact information for each member of Legislative Council can be found here. Please reach out - and thank you!

LR 2409, "An Act To Increase Collaboration between the Department of Education and School Food Service Directors"
This bill would ensure that superintendents and food service directors have a comprehensive list of eligible school-age children. Right now, eligible children are being left off this list, which means they have no access to nutritious meals. This bill will change that.

LR 2410, "An Act To Feed Young Children by Strengthening the Child and Adult Care Food Program"
This bill would be the vehicle to streamline the application, make the application available online, and would create consistent guidelines. Not allowing this bill through would mean one more year of lost opportunities to feed more children in and outside of school settings at YMCAs, Boys & Girls Clubs, etc.

LR 2416, "An Act To Feed Children from Low-income Families"
Right now there are 12,770 students in Maine who qualify for reduced-price lunch. Money should never be an obstacle to children eating. This bill would eliminate the co-pay for students who qualify for reduced-price lunch, ensuring that all children who are eligible for meal assistance in school receive free meals. 
GSFB Network is a blog for partner agencies of Good Shepherd Food Bank focused on feeding Maine's hungry.