Skip to main content

Sign up for our newsletter.

Quality journalism. Progressive values. Direct to your inbox.

If you’ve been waiting for the right time to support our work—that time is now.

Our mission is simple: To inform. To inspire. To ignite change for the common good.

But without the support of our readers, this model does not work and we simply won’t survive. It’s that simple.
We must meet our Mid-Year Campaign goal but we need you now.

Please, support independent journalism today.

Join the small group of generous readers who donate, keeping Common Dreams free for millions of people each year. Without your help, we won’t survive.

New Yorkers in need receive free produce, dry goods, and meat at a Food Bank for New York City distribution event at the Barclays Center on July 30, 2020 in New York City.

New Yorkers in need receive free produce, dry goods, and meat at a Food Bank for New York City distribution event at the Barclays Center on July 30, 2020 in New York City. (Photo: Scott Heins/Getty Images)

Biden Orders on Food Aid Heralded as 'Most Significant Anti-Hunger Actions in Modern Times'

The expected executive action comes as "families are struggling with food insecurity like never before."

Andrea Germanos

Social justice organizations and Democratic lawmakers on Friday welcomed President Joe Biden's expected executive actions boosting federal food aid as part of a broader and immediate coronavirus relief effort.

"As someone who has relied on food stamps and works in Congress to make sure we continue to fund SNAP benefits, I'm grateful the president is taking steps to make sure struggling families and workers can put food on the table during this pandemic," tweeted Rep. Deb Haaland (D-N.M.), Biden's pick to lead the Interior Department.

SNAP, or the Supplemental Nutritional Assistance Program, has faced surging demand in the economic fallout triggered by the pandemic.

The White House, in a statement, framed the actions as components of "equitable emergency economic relief" that would "help Americans persevere through the pandemic."

More specifically, as CNN reported:

The first of Friday's executive orders calls for the Department of Agriculture to consider enhancing Pandemic-EBT benefits by 15%, which would give a family with three children more than $100 in additional support every two months. The program, part of the relief packages Congress passed last March, provides funds to low-income families whose children's schools have closed to replace the free or reduced-price meals they would have received.

Also, the order directs the department to consider allowing states to boost food stamp benefits for about 12 million Americans who did not benefit from an earlier increase in emergency allotments included in the congressional relief packages. The order would bump up benefits for a family of four by 15% to 20% per month.

"While we await the details of this order," said the Massachusetts-based organization Project Bread, "we applaud the Biden administration for placing food insecurity among their top priorities. Federal nutrition programs like SNAP and Pandemic EBT are critical in the fight against skyrocketing rates of food insecurity during this crisis."

Democratic Congresswoman Chellie Pingree of Maine also welcomed the news.

"Finally, a president who cares about alleviating people's suffering," tweeted Rep. Pramila Jayapal (D-Wash.), the chair of the Congressional Progressive Caucus.

According to Joel Berg, CEO of Hunger Free America, Biden's action represented "a bold, common-sense move to address the nation's joint hunger and public health crises."

"These actions represent the most significant administrative actions by the federal government to fight domestic hunger in modern times," said Berg, calling the boosts in food aid "both smart and compassionate."

The benefits of the actions go beyond helping to combat food insecurity and its related adverse health impacts, he said. "Because hunger makes it harder for people to get back to work, and because food aid programs boost U.S. food companies and workers, these actions to increase the federal domestic food safety net will help the nation build back the economy better."

TalkPoverty.org, a project of the Center for American Progress, noted that as "many as 50 million Americans are food insecure right now. We need to keep pushing to make sure they're all fed."


Our work is licensed under Creative Commons (CC BY-NC-ND 3.0). Feel free to republish and share widely.

"I'm sure this will be all over the corporate media, right?"
That’s what one longtime Common Dreams reader said yesterday after the newsroom reported on new research showing how corporate price gouging surged to a nearly 70-year high in 2021. While major broadcasters, newspapers, and other outlets continue to carry water for their corporate advertisers when they report on issues like inflation, economic inequality, and the climate emergency, our independence empowers us to provide you stories and perspectives that powerful interests don’t want you to have. But this independence is only possible because of support from readers like you. You make the difference. If our support dries up, so will we. Our crucial Mid-Year Campaign is now underway and we are in emergency mode to make sure we raise the necessary funds so that every day we can bring you the stories that corporate, for-profit outlets ignore and neglect. Please, if you can, support Common Dreams today.

 

'We WILL Fight Back': Outrage, Resolve as Protests Erupt Against SCOTUS Abortion Ruling

Demonstrators took to the streets Friday to defiantly denounce the Supreme Court's right-wing supermajority after it rescinded a constitutional right for the first time in U.S. history.

Brett Wilkins ·


80+ US Prosecutors Vow Not to Be Part of Criminalizing Abortion Care

"Criminalizing and prosecuting individuals who seek or provide abortion care makes a mockery of justice," says a joint statement signed by 84 elected attorneys. "Prosecutors should not be part of that."

Kenny Stancil ·


Progressives Rebuke Dem Leadership as Clyburn Dismisses Death of Roe as 'Anticlimactic'

"The gap between the Democratic leadership, and younger progressives on the question of 'How Bad Is It?' is just enormous."

Julia Conley ·


In 10 Key US Senate Races, Here's How Top Candidates Responded to Roe Ruling

While Republicans unanimously welcomed the Supreme Court's rollback of half a century of reproductive rights, one Democrat said "it's just wrong that my granddaughter will have fewer freedoms than my grandmother did."

Brett Wilkins ·


Sanders Says End Filibuster to Combat 'Outrageous' Supreme Court Assault on Abortion Rights

"If Republicans can end the filibuster to install right-wing judges to overturn Roe v. Wade, Democrats can and must end the filibuster, codify Roe v. Wade, and make abortion legal and safe," said the Vermont senator.

Jake Johnson ·

Common Dreams Logo