81st Legislative Session – The Year of the Well-Fed Child
January 23, 2009 § Leave a comment
Advocacy and Online Marketing Director
I’m often humbled by the trust, generosity and confidence Central Texans bestow upon the Food Bank, during times of crisis. When we’ve asked for your help, you’ve responded. Together, we’ve risen to confront the challenges of hunger, food insecurity and emergency food assistance. But our work is not done, and will not be done if we see hunger as a Food Bank problem. Indeed, it is a Texas problem.
This legislative session is a new opportunity to reach out to the most vulnerable in our community, and provide lasting change beyond the power of donations and volunteer time. To support those we serve, the Food Bank and our hard working legislative representatives will need your support on public policy in the coming months. We’re asking you to engage your representatives and challenge them to support meaningful solutions to the hunger crisis in Texas, especially in the area of child nutrition.
In President Obama’s inaugural address he said, “The question we ask today is not whether our government is too big or too small, but whether it works.” While those on the political spectrum will certainly have different definitions of what a working government looks like, we should agree that the most basic needs for existence should be attainable in a functioning government. A working government should make it easier for Texans to thrive and be productive members of society. A working government should make wise investments in its future – the children of the great state of Texas. Former president George W. Bush often speaks of the character of Americans, that we are resilient and hopeful, caring and strong, sturdy and honest. Fellow Texans, we must not let hunger consume our potential and dampen our character.
I hope the 81st Texas Legislative Session is the year of the well-fed child, where access to food is seen as an investment in Texas’ future, and nourishment is recognized as essential to addressing obesity, sickness and disease, facing our children. With the legislation filed thus far, it seems to be a promising year.
You can stay informed on hunger-ending legislation by joining the Take Action Community.
Hunger-ending legislation to watch:
81(R) HB 613 – Food Stamp eligibility recertification without interview.
81(R) HB 612 – Relating to the eligibility of certain persons for the food stamp program.
81(R) HB 482
ESTABLISHMENT OF SMALL RETAILERS COMPETITIVE GRANT PILOT PROGRAM. (a) The department shall develop and implement a small retailer’s competitive grant pilot program through which the department will award grants to small retailers in certain low-income communities in this state to increase the access to fresh produce by individuals in those communities.
HB 275 would provide grants to low-income school districts to help them increase
breakfast participation by incorporating breakfast into the school day.
81(R) SB 344 – Relating to the establishment of an advisory committee to study the acceptance at farmers markets of food stamps and benefits under the women, infants, and children supplemental food program.
81(R) SB 282 Relating to grant programs to provide nutrition education to children.
Senator Eddie Lucio
SB 395 creation of the Early Childhood Health and Nutrition Interagency Council.