Universal School Meals Program Act (S. 2609 / H.R. 4684)
S. 2609 – Introduced October 16, 2019 by Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-VT)
H.R. 4684 – Introduced October 15, 2019 by Rep. Ilhan Omar (D-MN)
What it does: Major provisions of this act include free school breakfast, school lunch, and afterschool supper for all children, and no more embarrassing practices directed toward students with unpaid school meal fees and funding to schools for all delinquent school meal debt.
Advocacy Resources: FRAC’s fact sheet.
No Shame at School Act (S. 1907/ H.R. 3366)
S. 1907 – Introduced June 19, 2019 by Senator Tina Smith (D-MN)
H.R. 3366 – Introduced June 19, 2019 by Congresswoman Ilhan Omar (D-MN).
What it does: Includes provisions for prohibiting schools from taking any action that stigmatizes or shames students who cannot pay their meal fees, and requiring school districts to certify students who are categorically eligible (such as students who are homeless or in foster care) for free school meals.
Advocacy Resources: FRAC’s statement.
Endorse the Anti-Lunch Shaming Act of 2019 (S. 1119/H.R. 2311)
S. 1119 – Introduced April 10, 2019 by Sen. Tom Udall (D-NM)
H.R. 2311 – Introduced April 12, 2019 by Rep. Debra Haaland (D-NM)
What it does: Prohibits schools from taking action that stigmatizes or shames students who cannot pay their school meals fees and requires that all communication related to unpaid school meals fees be directed to the child’s parent or guardian.
School Hunger Elimination Act (S. 2752)
S. 2752 – Introduced on October 30, 2019 by Sen. Bob Casey (D-PA)
What it does: Helps support School Nutrition Programs, including increasing the number of low-income children who are directly certified to receive free school meals and bolstering the Community Eligibility Provision.
Advocacy Resources: FRAC’s fact sheet.
Caregivers Access and Responsible Expansion (CARE) for Kids Act of 2019 (S. 2760)
S. 2760 – Introduced October 31, 2019 by Sen. Bob Casey (D-PA)
What it does: Helps support children who are being raised by grandparents or relatives other than their parents by ensuring automatic access to free school meals.
Advocacy Resources: FRAC’s fact sheet and statement.
Military Dependents School Meal Eligibility Act (H.R. 8534)
H.R. 8534 – Introduced October 6, 2020 by Representative Susan Davis (D-CA)
What it does: Ensures access to free and reduced-price school meals for eligible children of active duty service members.
Advocacy Resources: FRAC’s one-pager.
School Modernization and Efficient Access to Lunches for Students (MEALS) Act of 2019 (S. 2692 / H.R. 5283)
S. 2692 – Introduced October 24, 2019 by Sen. Bob Casey (D-PA)
H.R. 5283 – Introduced December 3, 2019 by Rep. Marcia Fudge (D-OH)
What it does: Funds direct certification improvements through USDA grants and technical assistance; expedites the process through which states must implement necessary direct certification improvements; and eliminates the deadline for school districts to elect to participate in the Community Eligibility Provision, and provides additional time to gather the data necessary to determine eligibility.
Expanding Access to School Meals Act of 2019 (H.R. 5308)
H.R. 5308 – Introduced by Rep. Tim Ryan (D-OH) on December 5, 2019.
What it does: Increases eligibility for free school meals to 200 percent of the poverty line and eliminates reduced-price school meals; iIncreases the community eligibility multiplier from 1.6 to 1.8 which will allow more high poverty schools to offer breakfast and lunch at no charge to all students; allows all states to use Medicaid and CHIP to directly certify children (whose household income is 200 percent of poverty) for free school meals; and provides retroactive free reimbursement for meals served to children who are certified for free school meals later in the school year.
Tribal Nutrition Improvement Act of 2019 (S. 1307/H.R. 2494)
S. 1307 – Introduced by Sens. Tom Udall (D-NM), Catherine Cortez Masto (D-NV) and Tina Smith (D-MN) on May 2, 2019
H.R. 2494 – Introduced by Reps. Deb Haaland (D-NM), Raúl Grijalva (D-AZ) and Ben Ray Luján (D-NM) on May 2, 2019
What it does: Improves access to free meals for Native students who attend school on or near a reservation and allows tribal governments to administer child nutrition programs.
Advocacy resource: Press release from U.S. Senate Committee on Indian Affairs.