Carper, Senate Colleagues Make Strong Push for Passage of Child Nutrition Bill
Washington– U.S. Senator Tom Carper (D-DE) joined Senator colleagues today to urge passage of the The Healthy, Hunger-Free Kids Act (S.3307). The bill will reauthorize child nutrition programs before they expire on September 30th. The bi-partisan, completely paid-for legislation will make the largest investment in child nutrition programs since their inception.
Sen. Tom Carper (D-DE) was joined by Sens. Blanche Lincoln (D-AR), Richard Lugar (R-IN), Patrick Leahy (D-VT), Bob Casey, (D-PA), and Amy Klobuchar, (D-MN.). Dr. Sandra Hassink, American Academy of Pediatrics, Obesity Committee Chairman; Chuck Saylors, National PTA President; and Courtney Chea Reeve, Executive Director, Greenbrier Learning Center, also spoke about the importance of passing the bill. The event was attended by numerous hunger and nutrition advocates.
"The Healthy, Hunger-Free Kids Act is an important investment in our nation’s children and their future," said Sen. Carper. "Our kids need regular access to wholesome food and meals so they can lead healthy lives and learn to the best of their ability. Unfortunately too many of our kids don’t have enough healthy food available to them, which is why nearly 40 percent of our children in Delaware are either obese or overweight. This legislation tackles this problem and will ensure that all children, regardless of where they live, have access to nutritious and healthy meals while they are at school."
The Healthy Hunger Free Kids Act passed the Senate Agriculture Committee unanimously on March 24. The bill provides the first non-inflationary increase in the Federal reimbursement rate for school lunch programs since 1973. The bill also takes a critical step to address the epidemic of childhood obesity with a provision to require the Secretary of Agriculture, through a transparent regulatory process, to establish national nutrition standards consistent with the Dietary Guidelines for Americans for all foods sold on school campuses throughout the school day.
Current child nutrition programs will expire on September 30th. Detailed summaries of the Healthy, Hunger-Free Kids Act are available here: http://ag.senate.gov/site/legislation.html.