17% of children aren't getting enough food amid pandemic, research shows

U.S. children are facing an unprecedented level of food insecurity for modern times due to the COVID-19 pandemic, according to two new surveys cited by The New York Times.

For its COVID Impact Survey, NORC at the University of Chicago polled a nationally representative sample of 2,190 adults from April 20-26. In the second survey, the Hamilton Project and the Future of the Middle Class Initiative, both affiliates of the Brookings Institution, polled a nationally representative group of mothers with children ages 12 and under from April 27-28. 

The COVID Impact Survey found about 23 percent of households were struggling to buy enough food. This figure jumped to 35 percent among households with children. 

In the second survey, 17.4 percent of mothers (or 1 in 5 households) reported that their children were not eating enough because they couldn't afford to buy food. During the 2008 recession, just 5.7 percent of mothers reported the same, according to NYT.

"This is alarming," Lauren Bauer, PhD, a Brookings fellow who published an analysis of the surveys, told NYT. "These are households cutting back on portion sizes, having kids skip meals. The numbers are much higher than I expected."

In the analysis, Dr. Bauer outlines several measures the U.S. could take to increase food security and ensure children are receiving adequate nutrition to prevent the risk of serious developmental issues.

To learn more, click here.

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8 things Americans are thinking about COVID-19

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