Society of Behavioral Medicine (SBM) position statement: SBM urges Congress to preserve and increase the financing of federally funded nutrition assistance programs and services

Pamela Behrman*, Jill Demirci, Betina Yanez, Nisha Beharie, Helena Laroche

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

2 Scopus citations

Abstract

Deep cuts have been proposed to federally funded nutrition assistance programs, including the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP); the Special Supplemental Nutrition Program for Women, Infants, and Children (WIC); and federally subsidized school breakfast and lunch programs. Yet, these programs help parents afford healthy meals for their families, pregnant and postpartum mothers access supplemental foods and health services for themselves and their infants and young children, and children obtain the nutrition necessary for optimal school performance. Participation in these programs is linked with reductions in perinatal morbidity and mortality, improved childhood growth trajectories, enhanced school performance, and reductions in food insecurity and poverty. Given these compelling health and economic benefits, the Society of Behavioral Medicine urges Congress to protect and increase funding for federally funded nutrition assistance programs, specifically SNAP, WIC, and school breakfast and lunch programs. Per the recent (2017) recommendations of the School Nutrition Association, Congress should also resist any attempts to “block-grant” subsidized school breakfast and lunch programs, which could reduce access to these programs. It is further recommended that Congress improve the scope of implementation- and outcomes-based assessments of these programs. Finally, we recommend efforts to increase awareness of and participation in SNAP, WIC, and federally funded school meal programs for eligible individuals, children, and families.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)170-174
Number of pages5
JournalTranslational behavioral medicine
Volume9
Issue number1
DOIs
StatePublished - Jan 1 2019

Keywords

  • Adults
  • Children
  • Families
  • Nutrition
  • Poverty

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Applied Psychology
  • Behavioral Neuroscience

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