Saturday, November 26, 2022

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Hunger Action Month Sheds Light on OR Families Still Struggling

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Thursday, September 1, 2022   

September is National Hunger Action Month, highlighting the ways people can get involved to fight food insecurity.

Susannah Morgan, CEO of Oregon Food Bank, said hunger was a problem in the state before the pandemic, and in the midst of COVID-19's grip, one in five Oregonians faced food insecurity. Although numbers have gone down, she noted more than a million residents in the state sought emergency food assistance from the Oregon Food Bank network in 2021.

Morgan explained a number of factors are contributing to food insecurity right now.

"Driven by structural problems in wages, access to affordable housing, access to affordable health care, access to education," Morgan outlined. "Exacerbated by inflation and high cost of fuel, food and other necessities."

Morgan pointed out federal assistance to address hunger during the pandemic is slowly decreasing but added the state has not reached a cliff which would drive even larger numbers of families into a precarious position. On Wednesday, Morgan held her State of Hunger address to kick off the month.

Morgan note it is election season, which presents one important way people can get involved in combating hunger.

"It's really important who our leaders are going to be and whether they will support policies that will address or prolong hunger in our state," Morgan contended. "Everyone should get civically active."

Morgan stressed it is important for people to know food is available in their area. They can go to OregonFoodFinder.org to find a local food-assistance site.

Disclosure: Oregon Food Bank contributes to our fund for reporting on Budget Policy & Priorities, Community Issues and Volunteering, Hunger/Food/Nutrition, and Social Justice. If you would like to help support news in the public interest, click here.


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