Feeding America Responds to New Poverty Numbers

Sep 13, 2011, 13:07 ET from Feeding America

CHICAGO, Sept. 13, 2011 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- Statement Attributable to Vicki Escarra, president and CEO of Feeding America:

"Today the U.S. Census Bureau reported that the nation's poverty rate rose to 15.1 percent in 2010, up from 14.3 percent in 2009 -- the highest level since 1993.  Poverty affects African Americans and Latinos at nearly triple the rate of non-Hispanic whites.

"This reported increase is not a surprise to Feeding America. We know that more and more people are seeking help to feed themselves and their families. Proof of this is that the Feeding America network of food banks distributed 3.1 billion pounds of food in 2010, an increase of 500 million pounds over 2009, when 2.6 billion pounds were distributed.

"It is important to note that just last week the USDA reported that in 2010, nearly 49 million Americans were food insecure, about the same rate reported for 2009. The fact that food insecurity has remained stable while poverty has increased proves that the current safety net, including the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP), is working.  We must continue to protect our federal nutrition programs to meet the current rate of need."

Ross Fraser

SOURCE Feeding America