Janet Poppendieck, activist, author, professor emerita at Hunter College, co-founder of the NYC Food Policy Center, senior faculty fellow at the CUNY Urban Food Policy Institute, and WhyHunger Board Member, reflects on her decades of research and advocacy to promote the School Breakfast Program in light of its 50th anniversary.
By Nevin Cohen, Nicholas Freudenberg and Janet Poppendieck, CUNY Urban Food Policy Institute
Trump’s inauguration, coupled with Republican Congressional control, requires every constituency to analyze the threats to the gains of the last eight years. This is particularly urgent for New Yorkers seeking to advance three broad food goals: eliminating food insecurity and hunger, fighting malnutrition and health inequality, and ensuring a sustainable food system with good jobs. Anticipating efforts to undermine food justice enables advocates, researchers, and policy makers to choose priorities in our work and forge strategic partnerships. In this policy brief, Nevin Cohen, Nicholas Freudenberg and Janet Poppendieck from the CUNY Urban Food Policy Institute analyze likely changes in these three areas and propose strategies to promote food justice in the coming years
By Anabel Perez-Jimenez and Nicholas Freudenberg, CUNY Urban Food Policy Institute
In the United States, a century of social reforms has yielded several national programs that help people avoid hunger and food insecurity. In 2015, the Supplemental Assistance Program (SNAP) provided benefits to more than 44 million low-income U.S. residents at a cost of about $70 billion; the Women, Infants and Children program (WIC) offered healthy food to about 6 million women and their young children at a cost of $6.2 billion; and USDA’s School Food served lunches to about 30.5 million school children and breakfasts to about 14 million at a total cost of about $17 billion. These food safety net programs, however imperfect in their scope or implementation, mitigate the effects of poverty and food insecurity, improve health and help the United States join the club of civilized nations that aspire to make access to the food needed for well-being the norm rather than a privilege.
In May 2016 the CUNY Urban Food Policy Institute posted at eatingineastharlem.org the complete report Eating in East Harlem An Assessment of Changing Foodscapes in Community District 11, 2000-2015. The report, which we presented at the CUNY Urban Food Policy Forum on March 24th, analyzes changes in five domains -- food retail, food insecurity and food benefits, institutional food, food and nutrition education, and diet-related health conditions -- in East Harlem from before the election of Michael Bloomberg through the first two years of the de Blasio Administration.
Its goal is to assess the ways in which food environments in East Harlem have improved, stayed the same, or worsened in this 15-year period in order to inform setting food policy goals for the next 5, 10 or 15 years.