“Have there been times in the past 12 months when you did not have enough money to buy food that you or your family needed?” The answers to this question posed to hundreds of thousands of households by the Gallup organization, as part of the Gallup‐Healthways Well‐Being Index, reveal that Americans in every community and every state struggle to put food on the table. The Food Research and Action Center (FRAC) refers to this struggle as food hardship.
Seventeen percent of surveyed households in 2014 answered “Yes” to experiencing food hardship. As the economy works to recover from the Great Recession, these findings show that there are still millions of Americans who are being left behind.
The persistence of a high rate of food hardship underscores the failure of the economy to provide family‐supporting jobs and the failure of Congress to respond with adequately robust initiatives to boost jobs, wages and public support programs, such as the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP, formerly known as food stamps) and child nutrition programs.