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FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Tuesday, May 15, 2018

Press contact: Daniela Ogden, (646) 756-9887

Hunger Action Day at State Capitol on Wednesday, May 16 

Anti-hunger advocates will tell legislators: Food is a Human Right!

Sacramento - This Tuesday, May 16 350 California Hunger Action Coalition is bringing anti-hunger advocates from across California to rally on the north steps of the State Capitol. The group is demanding that the State Legislature restore safety net programs and acknowledge the pervasive effects of poverty in their state. The morning program will include speakers from the Legislature. The noontime rally will include an open mic, a group advocacy action, and an award presentation to legislative and community anti-hunger champions. 

In California, nearly 1 in 8 people, and 1 in 4 kids don't know where their next meal is coming from. For the 4.9 million Californians struggling with hunger, hard choices must be made between buying food and meeting such basic needs as housing, medicine, transportation, or childcare. The high rate of hunger results from a combination of the state's high cost of living, multiple budget cuts to safety net programs impacting low-income people and unnecessary state barriers to CalFresh (formerly known as food stamps).

WHO:  Over 350 people from across California, including many people who have experienced hunger, food insecurity and loss of benefits due to deep cuts to safety net programs, will provide testimonials at the rally after meeting with their legislators.

WHERE: North steps of the State Capitol

WHEN:  Wednesday, May 16, 2018 9:00 am -- 1:00 pm
9:30 AM Speaker: Assemblywoman Blanca E. Rubio
9:40 AM Speaker: Rob Bonta 
9:45 AM Speaker: Senator Holly Mitchell
12:00 pm -- 1:00 pm Lunch program with advocate open mic

California Hunger Action Coalition Policy Agenda

CHAC believes access to adequate, nutritious and safe food is a fundamental human right. With federal threats to the safety net, we must act to end our status as #1 in the nation in poverty:

Hunger

+ Provide a supplemental state CalFresh benefit of $28/month to fight hunger and improve health, and improve the CalWORKs special food benefit by converting it to CalFresh EBT and expanding it to children with unsafe water or lead poisoning. Companion legislation AB 2297 (Asm/Sen Human Services Budget).


+ Fight hunger, improve health, and support California agriculture by establishing the California Fruit and Vegetable EBT pilot for CalFresh customers to earn matching benefits via EBT for CA-grown produce. Companion legislation SB 900. (Asm/Sen Human Services Budget).


+ Fund the CalFood Program at $20.6 million to enable California food banks to purchase 103 million meals of California grown foods, and provide $25 million one-time for food bank infrastructure. (Asm/Sen Human Services Budget)


+ Support young children in low-wage working families by ensuring they have nutritious food in childcare by restoring state supplemental funding for breakfast and lunch served to eligible children in child care through the federal food program. (Asm/Sen Education Budget)


+ AB 1871 (Bonta) would ensure that low-income public charter school students are guaranteed access to a free or reduced-price, nutritious school meal, just like all other K-12 students have been since 1975.


+ AB 1892 (Jones-Sawyer) would expand CalFresh Transitional Benefits to prevent hunger in the transition from welfare-to-work.


+ AB 1952 (Mayes, Arambula, Steinorth) would establish a plan to end hunger in California and create a more just food system.


+ AB 3033 (Maienschein) would streamline the CalFresh application process by allowing persons applying for Medi-Cal through Covered California to simultaneously apply for CalFresh.


+ AB 2152 (Weber) would define the number of days that experiencing hunger would leave someone "unfit for work" and, therefore, exempt from the CalFresh 3-month time limit for able-bodied adults.

Poverty


+ Raise Supplemental Security Income (SSI) grants $100 a month to reach 100% of federal poverty level and restore the state COLA. Companion legislation AB 3200 (Asm/Sen Human Services Budget)


+ Achieve an equitable end to Cashout for SSI recipients so they can be eligible for CalFresh, while holding harmless any households that would otherwise lose benefits. (Sen/Asm Human Services Budget)


+ Establish a floor for CalWORKs grants to protect families from deep poverty and restore the CalWORKs 60-month clock. Companion legislation SB 982.
About California Hunger Action Coalition

About California Hunger Action Coalition (CHAC)

For 26 years, CHAC has been California's premier anti-hunger coalition: a broad-based membership organization that unites the foremost statewide and regional anti-hunger groups. From the Oregon to Mexico borders, CHAC joins together food banks, faith-based, legal aid and other organizations dedicated to ending hunger and the root causes of poverty and inequity in California.
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