Friday, July 20, 2012 at 4:43 PM
A combination of severe storms, drought and possible cuts to the food stamp program are hurting the pocketbooks of low-income Ohioans. Statehouse correspondent Karen Kasler has more on this issue.
Many poor people lost food in the storms three weeks ago. Now the nation is facing higher food prices because of the drought.
Lisa Hamler-Fugitt with the Ohio Association of Food Banks says the combination of the storms, the drought and possible cuts to the food stamp program in the Farm Bill are setting up a catastrophic scenario.
“It’s the perfect storm—a disaster of epic proportions,” Hamler-Fugitt says. “We’ve got a lot of ground to make up. And while the unemployment rate appears to be falling in the state, we have an increasing poverty rate and a severe food insecurity rate.”
Hamler-Fugitt says food banks lost food in the power outages, but some had generators, and others were able to move frozen food into cold storage units elsewhere. And though the state did offer additional food stamp benefits to recipients in the 34 hardest-hit counties, some low-income people found themselves temporarily without paychecks because their employers didn’t have power.
For more on how food banks and the state have been reacting to the storms and the drought, tune in to “The State of Ohio” on PBS stations statewide this weekend and at statenews.org.
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