Here’s a look at food insecurity in the Hampshire, Franklin, Worcester district:
About 23,000 people (or 15%) are food insecure. That means they are not sure where their next meal will come from.
Approximately 14,000 people receive SNAP, with their benefits totaling about $1.8 million every month.
Not only is SNAP a lifeline, it’s also a powerful boost for the local economy. Research has shown again and again that SNAP benefits enter the economy at the base level, meaning they’re spent as soon as folks get them—helping to mitigate hunger and food insecurity and stimulating the economy by supporting retailers and farmers. The Food Bank estimates that the district-level economic impact of $1.8 million in SNAP benefits is over $3.2 million per month, because the spending has a positive ripple effect.
But SNAP alone is not enough. Member agencies of The Food Bank of Western Massachusetts report over 375,000 visits to food pantries and meal sites in the district annually.
Please take a moment to look at the food security bills I have filed and co-sponsored this session, which appear in the tabs below.
- S.48: An Act relative to an agricultural healthy incentives program
- H.145: An Act relative to an agricultural healthy incentives program
- S.267: An Act regarding breakfast after the bell
- S.678: An Act improving public health through a common application for core food, health and safety-net programs
- H.2784: An Act relative to the Massachusetts Food Policy Council