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Access to Critical Food Services, Resources Part of New Introduced Legislation 

Staff Report

Photo by Brooke Lark on Unsplash

The Hunger Clearinghouse Enhancement Act of 2022 was introduced this week to address the food insecurity issue for families across the nation.  This new legislation was introduced by Congressman Joseph D. Morelle would increase the funding for the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s (USDA) Hunger Clearinghouse Hotline to improve access to food assistance, nutrition and social services information for families in need.

“More than 42 million people will experience hunger this year due to limited access to food assistance – including 13 million children,” Morelle said.

To better assist families to navigate the challenge of food access, increase their options and obtain hunger prevention education, the authorization of the Hunger Clearinghouse Enhancement Act will increase from $250,000 to $750,000.

Morelle said he’s proud to introduce this legislation and help better connect people to the resources they need, reduce food insecurity and uplift families in crisis.

“We have a moral obligation to address these staggering statistics and ensure no family goes without a warm meal especially during these already challenging times.”

March was considered Nutrition Awareness Month making this legislation a relevant issue during these times.

Joel Berg, CEO of Hunger Free America commented “…the call volume has tripled but our funding has stayed exactly the same.  We are so grateful to Rep. Morelle in taking the lead on helping us obtain the resources necessary to meet the soaring need.”

Access to the clearinghouse is possible in two ways:

1. By Phone:  Call the USDA National Hunger Hotline, which operates from 7:00AM – 10:00PM /eastern Time.  If seeking food assistance, call 1-866-3-HUNGRY or 1-877—8-HAMBRE to speak with a representative who will find food resources such as meal sites, food banks and other social services available near your location.

2. By Text:  Text to the automated service at 914-342-7744, with a question that may contain a keyword such as “food,” “summer,” “meals,” etc. to receive an automated response to resources located near an address and/or zip code.