HOUSTON — Why will the end of free summer lunches for school kids not hurt Houston families as much?
During the pandemic, the U.S. Department of Agriculture has given federal waivers to millions of kids to ensure they get free lunches year-round.
The popular program was especially important during the summer months when many low income families struggle to feed children without that easy access to a school lunch.
Now the program is expected to expire at the end of the month since Congress has failed to extend it.
The good news here in Houston is families will still have access to free meals. HISD’s free summer meal program kicks off June 13.
Any child between the ages of one and 18 can get free breakfast and lunch, no paperwork, registration or proof of income is required.
Adults can also get deeply discounted meals through the program. There is more information at on the district's website.
For the rest of the country the end of the federal program jeopardizes access to summer meals for seven million children according to advocates.
According to the head of the No Kid Hungry campaign, politicians are too focused on the return to normal after COVID.
They also warn the end of the program could hurt schools in the fall as well as they grapple with the same rise in food prices affecting us all.