Nearly 1 Million Kids Could Lose Automatic Free Lunch Under Trump Plan

WEDNESDAY, Oct. 16, 2019 (HealthDay News) -- A Trump administration plan to reduce the number of people who get food stamps could result in nearly a million children losing their automatic access to free school lunches.

Children whose families receive food stamps automatically qualify for free school lunches, but the Trump administration has proposed tightening eligibility for food stamps, the Associated Press reported.

As many as 982,000 children could be affected by the change, according to a U.S. Department of Agriculture analysis.

About half those children would have to pay a reduced price of 40 cents for school lunch and 30 cents for breakfast, about 40,000 would have to pay full price, and 445,000 would still be able to get free meals, but their families would have to apply to qualify, the AP reported.

But even the application to qualify could be a barrier, according to Lisa Davis of the advocacy group, No Kid Hungry.

"We hear from schools all the time about the challenge they have with getting families to understand the paperwork or to get it back," Davis told the AP.

The National School Lunch Program serves about 30 million students and provides about 20 million free meals each day.

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