House Rules Committee Chairman Jim McGovern (D-MA) held a roundtable on October 13 to examine family budgets and food insecurity in America. This event was the tenth in a series on food insecurity, with the goal of finding solutions to end hunger by 2030. Speakers included policy experts in health, transportation, and housing, including NLIHC’s Vice President of Public Policy Sarah Saadian. Sarah’s testimony focused on the intersection of hunger and housing instability for renters with the lowest incomes. “In order to end food insecurity, Congress must also end homelessness and housing poverty,” she said. “We must understand how central housing affordability is to other national priorities, including food security, healthcare, education and more.”
Sarah explained how severely housing cost-burdened families – those who spend over 50% of their monthly incomes on housing costs alone – have few resources left over for other basic needs, including nutritious food. Expanding programs like housing vouchers, which help families better afford housing by making up the difference between 30% of household income and the cost of rent and investing in the construction of deeply affordable housing can improve both housing stability and food security for households with low incomes.
“Rent is the single biggest cost for most workers and its going one direction, and that is up,” said Chairman McGovern. “Family budgets are being stretched thin, and it is my goal and the goal of this committee to examine this reality, and to discuss how many families worry every month about whether they can afford quality, healthy food.”
Read Sarah’s testimony at: https://bit.ly/2XdYguC
Find the press release at: https://bit.ly/3aGfPXC
Watch a recording of the roundtable at: https://bit.ly/3FQr79J