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Why Some Governors Turned Down a Food Assistance Program for Children in Their States

February 26, 2024

Why Some Governors Turned Down a Food Assistance Program for Children in Their States

Ask students: How might food assistance programs like the summer EBT program help to build stronger families and communities?

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Summary

A new federal food assistance program is aiming to reduce child hunger by giving low-income families money for summer groceries. But only those who live in certain states will have access to that relief.

View the transcript of the story.

News alternative: Check out recent segments from the NewsHour, and choose the story you’re most interested in watching. You can make a Google doc copy of discussion questions that work for any of the stories here.

Remote video URL

Key Terms

social safety net — a government-funded system that provides critical support to people during times of economic hardship

food insecurity — the condition of not having regular access to a sufficient amount of food

Warm Up Questions

  1. Who are the individuals and groups featured in the piece?
  2. What federal food assistance program are some governors rejecting?
  3. When did the government start to pilot the program?
  4. Why did the program get underway? Why have some governors rejected the program?
  5. Where have states rejected the program? What about where you live?
Screenshot: PBS NewsHour
Screenshot: PBS NewsHour
Screenshot: PBS NewsHour
Screenshot: PBS NewsHour

Focus Questions

How might food assistance programs like the summer EBT program help to build stronger families and communities?

Media literacy: What questions would you like to ask to the governors who have rejected the summer lunch program in their state? What about the governors who have accepted the program?

Alternative: See, Think, Wonder: What did you notice? What did the story make you think? What would you want to find out more about?

For More

What students can do:

  1. Conduct some basic economic research into the needs of millions of Americans living in poverty today. For example, take a look at the Food Research & Action Center's website or New York's Hunger Action Network or find a similar non-profit organization in your state.
  2. Next, discuss what you learned with a family member, neighbor or friend. You can mention this lesson and share the fact that the summer EBT program, the federal food assistance program highlighted in this video, "provides needy families with $40 a month for each child who's eligible while the school is not in session..."
  3. Ask them if they think that's enough money for a low-income family or one of the 7.4 million families living below the poverty line in the United States. Talk about whether or not the decision by the state governors to turn down the program is justified or not.
Screenshot: PBS NewsHour
Screenshot: PBS NewsHour

Republished with permission from PBS NewsHour Classroom.

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PBS NewsHour Classroom

PBS NewsHour Classroom helps teachers and students identify the who, what, where and why-it-matters of the major national and international news stories.

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