Common Dreams - It’s no secret that the country has been facing hard times; still, the soaring number of people who are food insecure is startling. The number of persons receiving food stamps has reached an all time high of 38 million, a 40% increase from February 2008 to November 2009. A recent report by The Food Research and Action Center (FRAC), one of the nation’s primary anti-hunger advocacy organizations, uncovered even more sobering news. This study of food hardship, defined as the lack of money to buy food that families need, revealed that food hardship affects nearly one in five families nationally. Food hardship has risen by 16% from the beginning of the recession to the fourth quarter of 2009.
The study, which was based on telephone interviews with over half a million people nationally, found food hardship rates were even worse for households with children. These households were 160% more likely to suffer from food hardship than households without children. For children living with even modest levels of food insecurity, the impact on their health, cognitive abilities, and development can be severe. Read more.