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Universal School Meals Program Act of 2021 will permanently provide children with free school meals

Senator Kirsten Gillibrand made her way across the state on Monday in support of the Universal School Meals Program Act of 2021.

Food insecurity among children is something that was around before Covid and will continue to be after Covid. Gillibrand supports this program because it would make it permanent to provide kids with free breakfast, lunch, dinner and snack no matter what their family’s income might be.

In support of the bill Gillibrand stopped in Ithaca and was joined by Ithaca City School District Superintendent Dr. Luvelle Brown and New York State Assembly member Dr. Anna Kelles.

Covid magnified the issue of food insecurity in schools and the USDA was quick to provide relief with a free school lunch program. With the Universal School Meals Program Act of 2021, children will continue to be fed regardless of income and the bill will reimburse school districts for meal debt as well as supporting local agriculture in the way of incentivizing the sourcing of food locally.

22 million children rely on free or reduced meals across the country.