According to a new study by the Rhode Island Community Food Bank, one in eight households in the state lack adequate food.
“Despite recent signs of an improved economy,” the Providence Business News reports, “one in eight Rhode Island households lacks adequate food, according to the 2015 Status Report on Hunger in Rhode Island from the Rhode Island Community Food Bank. …
“Approximately 54,000 Rhode Island households – 12.7 percent – were food insecure from 2012 to 2014, meaning they did not have the resources to purchase adequate food, the food bank said. Of those households, 20,000 reported the most severe conditions associated with hunger, the report said.
“It also said that food insecure families often have to choose between paying the rent and buying food, adding that U.S. Census Bureau estimates state that 41,000 Rhode Island children live in poverty.
The Ocean State, with one in five children living in poverty, has the highest rate in New England, the report stated. It states that children living in food insecure households are more likely to be in poor health and hospitalized than children in homes with adequate food.
“Other report findings:
• A total of 50,870 children receive free or reduced-price lunch at school; 31,770 also participate in the school breakfast program.
• Twenty percent of those served by member agencies of the Food Bank are 60 or older with approximately 12,000 seniors receiving food assistance each month. …
More here, at Providence Business News.
This sad state of affairs relates to a lack of living-wage jobs. I saw the documentary The Overnighters on the weekend and am still pondering all the different ways it was sad.
In the movie, people are so desperate for jobs that they leave families and everything familiar to seek back-breaking work in the fracking fields of South Dakota. They have no place to stay and no money for food, and a minister offers his church.
It just reminds you that people really do prefer jobs to relying on food banks or government assistance.