During this time of uncertainty and fear surrounding COVID-19 (better known as the coronavirus), Bread for the World wants you to know that we are actively engaging lawmakers to address the health and economic effects of the virus. As is often the case, people living in hunger and poverty are likely to suffer the greatest impacts.
Funding for domestic and global nutrition programs are needed now more than ever. Malnutrition weakens peoples’ immune system. Children who are malnourished face long-term health and cognitive consequences. Even people and families who do not contract the virus will be impacted due to loss of work and wages.
Some of the emergency measures Bread is supporting in emergency supplemental funding proposals to help people affected by the coronavirus include:
- Food assistance for families with children who receive free or reduced-price meals if their schools are closed.
- Waivers on SNAP benefit limits for adults without children.
- Additional funding for Women Infants and Children (WIC) to assist pregnant women and mothers with young children.
- An extension of unemployment insurance.
As Congress takes emergency action to respond to the coronavirus outbreak over the next few days, we encourage you to call your senators (800-826-3688) and tell them to immediately pass legislation that addresses the needs of the most vulnerable during this public health crisis!
Out of an abundance of caution, Bread has instructed our Washington, D.C., office staff to work remotely March 13-20. We will reevaluate the situation each week and act accordingly. In addition, we have asked staff to cancel all travel until further notice.
We pray for those already affected by the virus and for a quick return to normalcy.