FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Press Contact: Natalie Moran
This afternoon, the House Education and Labor Committee unveiled draft legislation to be marked up on Tuesday afternoon.
Rev. Douglas Greenaway, President & CEO of the National WIC Association, issued the following statement in response:
“The House language includes nearly $900 million in targeted WIC funding to provide a short-term boost to benefits for healthy foods and invest in efforts to enhance participation. This is a win-win that helps strengthen health outcomes for young children while also supporting farmers, suppliers, and retailers.
“These provisions have a strong record of bipartisan support. The late Rep. Ron Wright (R-TX) partnered with Rep. Kim Schrier (D-WA) to champion the short-term increase in WIC’s fruit and vegetable benefit. When ten Senate Republicans met with President Biden at the White House last week, they advocated for inclusion of the proposed funding for WIC outreach. Republicans and Democrats alike agree that these are essential, strategic, thoughtful investments in an effective program that delivers real relief to families with young children.
“The targeted WIC funding in the House’s draft COVID relief legislation kick starts our vision of an updated and enhanced WIC program that permanently expands the real value of the WIC food package including fresh fruits and vegetables; invests in effective, targeted, culturally appropriate WIC outreach to expand access and improve health outcomes for moms and young children; and assures 21st century access and flexibility to meet WIC families where they need to be met.
“Every day, WIC providers see and speak with families struggling to afford the nutritious foods that will help their children have a healthy start. Now is the time to strengthen WIC’s support. We urge the House Education & Labor Committee to quickly advance their language to the floor.”