New Survey Finds One in Six Marylanders Unable to Afford Enough Food in 2011
Report Exposes Broad Hunger, with Data for States, Large Cities and Congressional Districts
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Contact: Jennifer Adach, 202.986.2200 x3018
Washington, D.C. – March 1, 2012 – New food hardship data released by Maryland Hunger Solutions show continued economic challenges for many in the state, as one in six Marylanders said there were times they didn’t have enough money to buy food that they or their families needed.
The report, by the Food Research and Action Center, analyzes data collected by the Gallup organization, and provides data on food hardship – the inability to afford enough food – for every region, every state, every Congressional District and 100 of the country’s largest Metropolitan Statistical Areas (MSAs), including the Baltimore-Towson MSA. For Maryland, it found that:
- In 2011, 16.3 percent in the state said they were unable to afford enough food.
- For the Baltimore-Towson MSA, the food hardship rate was 16.7 percent in 2010-2011.
- Seven out of the eight congressional districts in Maryland had at least one in seven (13.5 percent) or more of their residents reporting food hardship in 2010-2011.
“Maryland may be considered one of the wealthiest states in the nation, but hunger runs deep in our state. These new data show us just how much people are struggling, and underline that far too many of them are finding it a challenge to afford enough food for their families,” said Maryland Hunger Solutions Director Cathy Demeroto.
Messages from Marylanders from every county in the state underscore both the increased need and the support for federal nutrition programs. Since December, more than 500 paper apples have been collected by Maryland Hunger Solutions as part of its Paper Apple Campaign which asked people to share their stories and solutions for a hunger-free Maryland.
“The message from Marylanders is loud and clear – that the federal nutrition programs can help end hunger in this state, and that they must be strengthened,” said Demeroto. “It is time for our elected officials to tackle hunger with the zeal that the situation demands.”
Recent polling data, released last month by FRAC, demonstrate the broad support among Americans for the federal nutrition programs and for a stronger role by government in ending hunger. Seven in 10 voters said the federal government should have a major role to ensure that low-income families and children have the food and nutrition they need. Seventy-seven percent of voters say that cutting food stamp assistance (known in Maryland as the Food Supplement Program) would be the wrong way to reduce government spending.
The full report is available at www.frac.org
About This Report
FRAC’s food hardship report analyzes data that were collected by Gallup and provided to FRAC. The data were gathered as part of the Gallup-Healthways Well-Being Index project, which has been interviewing almost 1,000 households daily since January 2008. FRAC has analyzed responses to the question: “Have there been times in the past twelve months when you did not have enough money to buy food that you or your family needed?”