From the United Way of Tompkins County:
“51% of residents and 70% of key informants indicated that hunger was a critical problem in the community. The perception of hunger as a problem was nearly equal across all income levels and age categories suggesting that the issue has been more visible in the community. On the household level, nearly 23% of respondents indicated having enough money for food was a critical problem in their household in the past year – up from 10% in 2003. Data from the county food pantries confirm this trend with a 30% increase in the number of households utilizing their services between 2003 and 2008. Food stamp participation has increased steadily over the past 6 years from 2,288 households in December, 2003 to 4,223 households in December, 2009. Children receiving free or reduced lunches have increased from 2001 to 2007 data, with the highest percentages of students receiving free lunches in Groton (23%), Dryden (24%), Ithaca (28%), and Newfield (34%) school districts.” Source: Data from 2008 COMPASS II-2.0
Here at Hot Potato Press we ask: Have you experienced hunger or food insecurity? Do you know someone who has? Would you be willing to share your experiences and ideas for solutions in the comments below?
Image credit: By matthew098 (Own work) [CC BY-SA 3.0 (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/3.0)], via Wikimedia Commons