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Study: 87,000 Working Poor Idahoans Are Part of 'Hunger Epidemic'

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HUNGER FREE AMERICA
  • Hunger Free America
According to a report issued Friday morning from Hunger Free America, as many as "63 percent of hungry Idahoans are working." Calling the new data "shameful," Hunger Free America CEO Joel Berg described the trend as an "epidemic" that would continue "unless we change our current economic and political policies nationwide."

"Low wages are still the top cause of U.S. hunger and malnutrition," Berg wrote in an announcement of the study.

The "epidemic" includes 87,000 Idahoans who live in food insecure households where at least one person is employed. Nationwide, study authors stated approximately 35 percent of all Americans living in food insecure households were employed. Idaho was among the states with the highest percentage of working poor who have trouble affording food, outpaced only by Alaska, North Dakota and Utah.

The study also pointed to the importance of the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program, better known as food stamps. Approximately 44 million Americans depend on SNAP, according to the data, and eight of the top 10 SNAP-utilizing states leaned toward Donald Trump in the general election, "disproving the stereotype that SNAP recipients are all in inner cities of 'blue states,'" wrote Berg.

"We hope that President-elect Trump commits to ending U.S. hunger by creating jobs, raising wages and bolstering the federal food safety net," Berg wrote. "At a bare minimum, we hope President-elect Trump pledges to stop Speaker Paul Ryan’s misguided plans to again slash food aid to vulnerable Americans in order to pay for more tax cuts for the mega-rich.”

Read the full study, titled "The State of the Working Hungry," here:

See related PDF National_Working_Hunger_Report_November_2016_0.pdf