NYCCAH’s 2008 Hunger Survey, entitled No Bailout for the Hungry: Funding Slashed to Emergency Food Providers as Hunger in NYC Continues to Soar, also showed a 20% rise in the number of meals served by soup kitchens and food pantries in the last year, with many agencies reporting an increase in the number of seniors, immigrants and families with children served. Despite the growing demand, 72.3% of agencies reported a drop in government funding in the past year.
“Funding has been dwindling for years but I’ve never seen it this bad,” said Christy Robb, Director of Community Outreach and Food Pantry at Hour Children in
Agencies across the city are looking to the new Presidential administration to fulfill its promise of expand funding for soup kitchens and food pantries and increasing the food buying power of low-income Americans. “The bad news is that we have more agencies than ever running out of food. The hunger situation which was truly awful in 2007 has now reached crisis proportions,” said NYCCAH Executive Director Joel Berg. “The good news is that the next President and Congress have a great opportunity to rapidly reverse these trends by strengthening the nutrition safety net and creating living wage jobs.”
Following the release of the 2008 data, legislators across the city and state reiterated the need to expand food stamp access by ending the City policy of finger-imaging food stamp applicants; to dedicate more funding for emergency food programs; and to provide New Yorkers with a living wage so that they will be able to purchase the food they need.
“New Yorkers in all five boroughs have felt the alarming rise in the cost of food in both their stomachs and wallets,” said Councilman Eric Gioia. “Eradicating hunger in