PNS Daily Newscast - February 17, 2020 

44 Americans infected, but not all show signs of coronavirus illness; and many NC counties declare themselves 'Second Amendment sanctuaries.'

2020Talks - February 17, 2020 

Nevada's experiment with early caucusing is underway until tomorrow. Some candidates plus some Nevada Culinary Workers Union Local 226 members oppose Medicare for All, but Vermont Sen. Bernie Sanders defends it, with a study just published making the case for it.

Thousands of Oregonians Still Going Hungry

November 16, 2007

Portland, OR – Nearly one out of every eight Oregonians is hungry or wondering where their next meal is coming from. A new U.S. Department of Agriculture report shows for the past two years, Oregon's hunger and "food insecurity" rate has remained about the same. Patti Whitney-Wise with the Oregon Hunger Relief Task Force says that means Oregon's trend of reducing hunger has stalled, partially because wages aren't keeping up with costs.

"The higher cost of fuel, food, housing, utilities, all of that is bumping up at a higher percent than wages are, and so we're running to stay in the same place."

Whitney-Wise says about 430,000 Oregonians rely on help from Food Stamps every month, but the benefits aren't keeping up with inflation.

"We really need to increase the effectiveness of the food stamp program if we're going to make any headway at this point."

Whitney-Wise says despite an improving economy, basic living costs are far outpacing wages. She adds the new Farm Bill, which is currently being debated in Congress, will set funding for federal nutrition programs for the next five years. Programs like Food Stamps, and the federal Emergency Food Assistance Program that provides bulk food commodities for foodbanks, have not received additional funding in the past few years, although they are serving more people. If the current bill passes, it includes small increases for both programs.

Dondrea Warner/Eric Mack, Public News Service - OR