Hunger, Poverty, and Health Disparities During COVID-19 and the Federal Nutrition Programs’ Role in an Equitable Recovery
The health and economic crises brought on by the COVID-19 pandemic have made the federal nutrition programs more important than ever. An unacceptably high number of people in America do not have enough to eat, and it is likely that the economic recovery for families who struggle to put food on the table will take years. Structural factors of inequities include governing processes and economic and social policies that affect wages and earnings, employment opportunities and working conditions, and access to affordable housing and quality education. These structural factors lead to systemic injustices in food insecurity, poverty, and health. This review examines the connections between hunger, poverty, health, and equity during COVID-19 and details how COVID-19 has exacerbated disparities that predated the pandemic due to systemic injustices. The review also discusses the role of the federal nutrition programs in the recovery from the pandemic.
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