Posted on Wed, June 02, 2010 by Intern
1 Comments | Categories: Food Justice, News, Current Events, Policy, School Food, Take Action,
by intern Christine Binder
Recently, the Slow Food USA network sent over 40,000 letters to Congress asking Senators not to delay action on the Child Nutrition Act. The goal was for legislators to sign a “Dear Colleague” letter asking Senate leaders to schedule time for floor debate and pass the Child Nutrition Act before this session of Congress runs out of time. Here’s an update on what’s happened since then:
On May 27th, Senate leaders received the bipartisan “Dear Colleague” letter, which included the signatures of 53 Senators. (Great job, everyone!) You can click here to see the letter and check if your Senators signed it.
Just last Thursday, the House voted on an amendment to the Defense Authorization Bill. The amendment, sponsored by McGovern (D-MA), Emerson (R-MO), Bishop (D-GA), includes a “Sense of Congress” stating that hunger and obesity are impairing military recruitment and must be properly addressed by fully funding child nutrition programs. The Defense bill does not appropriate funding to the Child Nutrition Act, but it stands as a record that Congress feels that child nutrition programs should allocated an additional $10 billion over the next ten years, as requested by President Obama. The result of the vote is encouraging: 341 Representatives voted for the amendment and only 85 voted against it. Here is the list of which House members voted yes and which voted no.
Hopefully the Child Nutrition Act will come to the House and Senate floors within the next several weeks. Until then, it’s up to us to keep telling Congress that school lunch is a priority for their constituents. Congress has the power to fully fund child nutrition programs, so we need to hold them to their promises. Your legislators will be home in their districts this week. If they signed the “Dear Colleague” letter or voted for the McGovern-Emerson-Bishop amendment, give them a call or send them a note to say that you appreciate their support and that you’re counting on them to make a difference for the health of America’s kids.