Letter to the Editor: Submitted by Kathy Hay

To the Editor:

The Democrats in the House all supported the Continuing Resolution (CR) to keep the U.S. government open while some of Johnson’s, Speaker of the House, Republican party opposed it. This stop-gap measure includes funding for the military, Social Security, Medicaid, Medicare, Food Stamps, and the Special Supplemental Nutrition Program for Women, Infant, and Children (WIC). Democrats put people over party.

However, the Continuing Resolution does not include additional funding for WIC, which is seeing increased enrollment as food prices rise. Food Stamp enrollment (SNAP) has been curtailed following the end of the Public Health Emergency (PHE) and further reduced due to the Iowa bill that adds wealth limits, work requirements, and additional paperwork for participants.

In Allamakee County, there are over 1,400 children living in poverty who are food insecure (U.S. Census and Feeding America). Nearly 17% of children in Allamakee live below the poverty level (Anna E. Casey Foundation). That means one out of six children in Allamakee County go to school hungry.

When infants and children do not get a good nutritional start, they fall behind developmentally and often struggle in school.

Now Republicans are making it harder for children to get fed by not increasing funding for WIC even with additional need in the face of higher food prices.

Republican, Democrat, or Independent, if you care about hungry children, please let your U.S. Congressional Representative know that you want WIC benefits increased to help alleviate hunger in Allamakee County. Call U.S. Representative Ashley Hinson, DC Office 202-225-2911, Cedar Rapids Office 319-364-2288, Dubuque Office 563-557-7789, Waterloo Office 319-266-6925, tweet @RepAshleyHinson, or visit her website at https://hinson.house.gov/ to contact her.

Kathy Hay