ROCHESTER, N.Y. (WROC) — With Thanksgiving tomorrow, the group Hunger Free America joined with state leaders and advocates to point out, not everyone is going to have a meal. They’re proposing a bill that will act as the next set of aid for those struggling economically during the pandemic, like the HEROES Act that was approved by the House earlier this year.
Senator Kirsten Gillibrand said nationwide, one in five parents do not have enough food to feed their kids.
She said if you take a look at food banks or pantries anywhere in the state: “at every one of these places the line of people and cars has stretched longer and father than ever before in the history of these food banks.”
This problem is affecting residents here in Rochester, according to Julie Tedesco, president of Foodlink. She said the demand for their work has surged by 40 to 50% since March.
“Our collective response comes nowhere near the federal government’s ability to provide a true safety net,” said Tedesco.
She and other advocates said it’s been too long since the last relief bill was passed in the state to help.
Hunger Free American said in a survey they recently did among low-income Americans, there is a consensus that more help is in fact needed to survive, for people to have a safety net of access to life securities – like food and shelter.
In the proposed bill they’re asking for a guarantee of living wage jobs to all adults, increase in snap funding, quality health care, more housing affordable, eliminate wage clips where people lose benefits as soon as they work more hours and get a raise.
That survey was taken among 807 Americans in rural suburban and urban areas, from both political parties, who made under 50,000 a year.