Research-To-Practice Brief

More than One in Six Adults Were Food Insecure Two Months into the COVID-19 Recession

This Urban Institute brief highlights how the COVID-19 pandemic has impacted food insecurity, access to school meals, and charitable food distribution for adults and their families in the U.S. Based on data pulled from the first wave of the Urban Institute’s Coronavirus Tracking Survey, more than one in six adults ages 18 to 64 (17.7 percent) and more than one in five parents living with children (21.8 percent) reported in May 2020 that their households experienced food insecurity during the previous 30 days. The brief notes that this represents a moderate 3.2 percent drop from 20.9 percent in March/April 2020. While the increase in Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) benefits alleviated strain on food budgets for many, the brief concludes that despite the moderation in reported food insecurity over time, SNAP will continue to be a crucial key in alleviating food insecurity.

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