Food pantries hoping Biden executive order will help ease burden brought on by pandemic

President Joe Biden signed an executive order increasing funds for the SNAP program as well as for free school lunches.

News 12 Staff

Jan 28, 2021, 11:19 PM

Updated 1,174 days ago

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Several months into this pandemic, local food pantries have faced a continuous increase in need that many have struggled to keep up with.
The headquarters of Community Action Southold Town (CAST) has been a lifesaver for needy people on the North Fork for decades.
Like other pantries, the number of people seeking help from CAST has skyrocketed with people looking for food, clothing or help with rent and utility bills.
Several days a week, CAST does food distribution, where lines have stretched. Many of those looking for help are considered middle class, who find themselves in need because of the pandemic.
"We've seen a five-fold increase in need here. We went from providing about 4,500 meals per month to sometimes 25,000 meals per month," says Cathy Demeroto, of CAST. "My food pantry bills have gone from $1,200 a week to well over $7,000 a week.
President Joe Biden signed an executive order increasing funds for the SNAP program as well as for free school lunches.
Food pantries are left hoping that the executive order will help ease their burden.
There's an estimated 40 million Americans receiving some sort of food assistance, equating to about 1 in 8 people in the country.


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