First Lady Michelle Obama is hoping that Republicans will see no good reason to stand in the way of the proposed “Healthy, Hunger-Free Kids Act,” which would provide millions of dollars to school districts across the nation to improve their food quality, while also increasing the number of kids eligible for free or reduced-price meals. The bill could be voted upon today and would also limit junk food in school vending machines, according to The Washington Post, all part of the nation’s fight against childhood obesity, which has hit epidemic levels.
The U.S. House of Representatives was supposed to vote on the measure yesterday, leading anti-hunger advocates and school nutritionists in Colorado to express anger with Republicans who blocked the $4.5 billion bill. “It’s absolutely unconscionable that our elected officials think so little of the children in this country that they cannot get it together to pass this bill,” Ann Cooper, director of nutrition services for Boulder Valley School District, tells The Denver Post.
Kevin Concannon, the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s undersecretary for food, nutrition, and consumer services, was in Denver yesterday to boast about the quality of school lunches now made from scratch at Denver Public Schools. After eating lunch with kids at Fairmont Dual Immersion Academy, he said he expected the bill to be passed today.
Meanwhile, the editorial board of The Aurora Sentinel also blasts Republicans for their “sneaky move” to kill the bill, which at least shines a spotlight on how “unhealthy” school fare is these days.