NY Senator Gillibrand Introduces Legislation To Provide Nutritious Meals For More Children Over The Summer

Rachael Ray, Sen. Kirsten Gillibrand and students at Public School 89.

Photo c/o The Daily News/Enid Alvarez

On Wednesday, Senator Kirsten Gillibrand introduced the Summer Meals Act, which would enhance the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) Summer Food Service Program. The legislation would help improve nutrition and enhance learning in underserved areas by better integrating summer education and meals programs, making it easier for public-private partner organizations to participate in the summer meals program, and by providing a third meal for children who attend evening enrichment programs.

“Many children receive their only meal at school during the year, and when school is out for the summer, they go hungry,” said Senator Gillibrand, first New York Senator to serve on the Senate Agriculture Committee in nearly 40 years. “The bipartisan Summer Meals Act would help combat this problem by strengthening the USDA summer nutrition program to help more children across America access quality meals during the summer months. Every child who is hungry should have food year round.”

The Summer Meals Act would help more children access healthy food by lowering the threshold to allow areas with 40 percent or more of students receiving free or reduced lunch to be eligible for the program. Currently the bar is set at 50 percent. This legislation would also reduce the paperwork burden for private-public partnerships who want to participate in the program, provide children with transportation to the summer meals sites, and would also offer an additional meal to children who attend evening programs.

The USDA Summer Food Service Program provides low-income children under age 18, who would normally receive free or reduced school lunch, with quality, nutritious food during the summer.  Several programs run in tandem with educational enrichment programs to keep children engaged and safe during the summer months. Curren

Print Friendly, PDF & Email
Share this Article: