The USDA released a report showing that hunger in the United States will increase significantly in 2022. According to the report, 44.2 million people had difficulties providing enough food for their families, an increase from 33.8 million the previous year. This includes more than 13 million children.
Elaine Waxman, a senior fellow at the Urban Institute who specializes in federal food insecurity and nutrition programs, attributes this rise to measures put on hold during the pandemic to strengthen America’s social network. This was the case for free school meals, or the so-called Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program.
According to other experts, high prices are responsible for exacerbating the problems. In addition, more and more Americans are working in jobs whose future is uncertain.
With regard to children’s development, it is particularly harmful that they do not always have access to adequate nutrition. It also affects cognitive abilities.
The report also highlighted further inequalities: The number of people experiencing hunger in Black and Latin American households was more than double the number of people experiencing hunger in white households.
Cover image source: Getty Images