Rev. Greenaway: “These proposed WIC investments strengthen the foundation laid by the American Rescue Plan Act to enhance nutrition security and improve health outcomes for millions of WIC-eligible children.”
The White House budget proposed $6 billion in spending for the Special Supplemental Nutrition Program for Women, Infants, and Children (WIC), inclusive of two new funding streams to meet expected needs: $200 million to support benefits should cost or participation increase and $100 million to support WIC technology systems.
Rev. Douglas Greenaway, President & CEO of the National WIC Association, issued the following statement in response:
“As the nation emerges from the COVID-19 pandemic, the Biden Administration has been front-and-center in highlighting targeted and effective solutions to address the nation’s high healthcare costs. The proposed fiscal year 2022 federal budget doubles down on the Administration’s ongoing commitment to building nutrition security, starting with the tailored nutrition needs of pregnant and postpartum women, babies, and young children served by WIC. These proposed WIC investments strengthen the foundation laid by the American Rescue Plan Act to enhance nutrition security and improve health outcomes for millions of WIC-eligible children.
“We are especially excited that the budget prioritizes update of WIC’s food packages, a transformational opportunity promoted by NWA that could bolster the diets and overall health of women and children served by WIC. Too often, healthy foods such as fruits, vegetables, and seafood remain out of reach for low-income families and under consumed by children. With increased investment, NWA is confident that WIC’s food benefit will bring more families closer to the nutrient recommendations in the Dietary Guidelines for Americans – a critical step to further reducing rates of childhood obesity, bringing down healthcare costs, and setting up children for future life success.
“Essential technology funding and ongoing efforts to streamline access and reach eligible families are also essential steps for maximizing WIC’s proven record of public health success. Enhancing WIC access and benefits is one of the most straightforward steps to building stronger nutrition security for millions of families.
“We are encouraged that President Biden’s budget embraces key NWA priorities and look forward to partnering with Congress, USDA, and the Administration to realize the potential for increased investments in WIC that connect eligible families to services, permanently increase WIC benefits, and truly invest in the health and success of the next generation.”