June 10, 2010

Feeding America, the nation's largest domestic hunger-relief organization, today hailed the"Improving Nutrition for America's Children Act of 2010" a bill unveiled by House Education and Labor Committee Chairman Rep. George Miller (D-CA). Joining him in the announcement were Reps. Carolyn McCarthy (D-NY) and Todd Platts (R-PA), the Chairwoman and Ranking Member of the Subcommittee on Healthy Families and Communities. Also joining in the announcement were Reps. Rosa DeLauro (D-CT) and Jim McGovern (D-MA). This Act would dramatically improve access to nutritious meals both in and out of school, as well as increase the nutritional quality. The Act focuses on streamlining program administration and providing children with year-round access to healthier, nutritious foods. In May, Sen. Blanche Lincoln (D-ARK) reported a piece of companion legislation the"Healthy, Hunger-Free Kids Act of 2010" out of the Senate Agriculture Committee. Feeding America has been at the forefront of the push for this legislation and worked collaboratively on its development with members of Congress and organizations involved in the fight against domestic hunger.

Daytime television host, author, child nutrition advocate and Feeding America Entertainment Council member Rachael Ray, highlighted measures included in the proposed legislation which are specifically targeted to advance the fight against ever-increasing hunger in the United States. These measures include enforcement protocols to implement new school food safety guidelines, support public and private child nutrition partnerships, reduce childhood obesity, and to improve school wellness.

"The Feeding America network applauds the outstanding leadership of Chairman Miller in introducing this bill and recognizing the critical importance of programs to help ensure that low income children have increased access to nutritious food both during the school day and when school is out, such as in the summer, afterschool or over weekends and vacations from school," said Vicki Escarra, president and CEO, Feeding America."This is a critical time for our national leaders to address the rapidly unfolding crisis of domestic child hunger. Nearly 17 million children struggle with hunger, not knowing if – or from where – they will get their next meal. Our children's futures depend on their assurance that hunger will not steal away their opportunities for success. As a leader in the fight against hunger, Feeding America is especially grateful for the continued and unyielding support extended by Rachael Ray to advance the fight against hunger across America through her public appearances and networking. The current bill and our continued individual and collective efforts to raise awareness of childhood hunger provide hope for us all.

Feeding America urges swift passage of this bipartisan legislation which will forge a path towards expanding nutrition programs for children in need. We continue to support President Obama's proposal for $10 billion over 10 years in new funding for child nutrition programs in order to realize the full potential of the Child Nutrition Law to help end child hunger."


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