WASHINGTON, July 15, 2021 — Today, the Food Research & Action Center (FRAC) released its Food Insufficiency During COVID-19 Dashboard to illustrate how the pandemic has caused alarming spikes in hunger in America.
The Dashboard features up-to-date national and state-by-state data on reported food insufficiency rates, research on how the pandemic has exacerbated existing disparities in the access to food, and resources that show the connections between hunger, poverty, and health.
“Even before COVID-19, millions of households struggled to put food on the table,” said Luis Guardia, president of FRAC. “Our new Dashboard is a one-stop resource that shows how the pandemic has only deepened America’s hunger crisis, especially among Black, Latinx, and Native American households.
Things would be even worse if not for boosts to Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) benefits that help families who are struggling to afford food, the creation of the Pandemic EBT program to provide nutrition benefits to families who rely on free and reduced-price school meals when schools closed, and the USDA nutrition waivers that allow free school meals to be provided to children during the pandemic. We hope lawmakers will use FRAC’s Dashboard to better understand the critical need for investing in the proven federal food programs to ensure everyone has access to the nutrition they need and to stimulate our economy.”
Key components of the Dashboard are calculated using the Census Bureau Household Pulse Survey Data Tables:
- food insufficiency data in the U.S., organized by race and ethnicity, family type, and gender from August 2020–June 2021;
- data visualizations that map the average rate of food insufficiency during the pandemic and provide a state-by-state comparison of food insufficiency; and
- research briefs that highlight key concepts of pandemic-related hunger by defining and measuring food insecurity and the impact of COVID-19 on communities of color and underrepresented populations.
The Dashboard will be updated every two weeks and is available here.
The Food Research & Action Center improves the nutrition, health, and well-being of people struggling against poverty-related hunger in the United States through advocacy, partnerships, and by advancing bold and equitable policy solutions. To learn more, visit FRAC.org and follow us on Twitter and on Facebook.