S.C. Hunger Rate Leads U.S.

Dec 8, 2006

About 6.3 percent of households in South Carolina – roughly 100,000 families – had “very low food security,” according to a U.S. Department of Agriculture study issued last month.

That means normal eating patterns were disrupted and some had less to eat.

The percentage is the highest in the nation and well above the U.S. average of 3.8 percent.

“If you look at transportation and livable wages, South Carolina is really not doing well,” said Susan Berkowitz, director of the S.C. Appleseed Legal Justice Center, another anti-poverty advocacy group.

“We have high levels of uninsured, low levels of education. It just all adds up.”

The USDA and Legal Justice Center reports don’t indicate South Carolina families regularly go without food.

Instead, advocates say the working poor rely more on aid agencies and programs for food as they use more of their modest income on increasingly expensive needs such as transportation and health care.

Read entire Sun News article.

South Carolina needs to unify and fix these problems in their state, which as the article points out extend beyond hunger and poverty. Hunger and poverty are just symptoms. All of us, including South Carolina, cannot solve the problem by attacking the symptoms. We need to take all the factors into consideration, including education, healthcare, and employment opportunity. Even high employment rates mean little when the jobs fail to pay enough for the workers to support themselves, and avoid hunger and poverty.

We all need to heed that advice, because this problem not only exists in South Carolina, but also exists at the national and global level. Let’s continue the war on poverty and hunger long after the holiday season.

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Children suffering from Poverty