The American Rescue Plan, passed by Congress and signed today by President Biden, is landmark legislation providing significant relief to the 1 in 6 Massachusetts households struggling to afford food. The global pandemic and high rates of unemployment have exacerbated food insecurity in our state. Project Bread applauds the Biden administration for championing and this law. We are also very grateful to our Massachusetts congressional delegation for leading the national discourse on hunger solutions and unanimously supporting the American Rescue Plan.
The economic pain the pandemic has caused households and our economy at-large will continue to impact us for months, if not years. The Congressional Budget Office predicts it will be 2024 before unemployment falls to pre-pandemic levels. Large-scale hunger solutions are critical right now, as 1 in 5 Massachusetts households with children faces food insecurity with Black and Latino households disproportionately impacted - 1 in 3 for Black and Latina/o households with children. The American Rescue Plan represents significant progress in making scalable solutions for hunger more accessible while also addressing the underlying inequities that cause poverty and food insecurity.
An estimated 70% of the American Rescue Plan’s 1.9 trillion dollars is targeted directly toward low and middle income households.
In addition to addressing food insecurity, the American Rescue Plan also provides critical financial support to families and communities hardest hit during this crisis:
Project Bread applauds the tangible progress the Congress has made in increasing access to federal nutrition programs through the American Rescue Plan. Federal nutrition programs are the most efficient and effective way to ensure every one can access and afford food but they remain underutilized. According to recent estimates, as many as 700K people in MA are eligible for SNAP but not enrolled. There is significant work ahead. Project Bread will continue our efforts to ensure people who are food insecure across the Commonwealth are aware of these programs and receive personalized and compassionate support in accessing them with dignity. We look forward to working with the Biden administration and continuing to partner with our Congressional delegation and state and local policymakers to realize a Massachusetts where hunger had been permanently solved.