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A new report by the New York City Coalition Against Hunger reveals nearly 49% of Bronx children live in households with an “inconsistent supply of nutrition”
The Boogie Down has the greatest number of growling bellies.
The Bronx is the hungriest borough — with nearly half of kids and more than a third of homes lacking access to all the food they need, according to a new report.
From 2010-2012, some 36% of Bronx households were “food insecure” — up nearly 8% from the 2006-2008 period, according to a new report by the New York City Coalition Against Hunger.
Kids had it especially rough: Nearly 49% of Bronx children lived in a household with an inconsistent supply of nutrition — up 13% from 2006-2008.
“This should be a national scandal,” coalition Executive Director Joel Berg told The News. “It’s an ultimate rebuke to someone who says the status quo is good enough.”
Citywide, one in five kids, about 406,260, lived in homes that had less than enough food from 2010 to 2012. Manhattan logged the second-highest percentage of kids going without — 27.13% — followed by Brooklyn, at 15%, and Queens at 11.58%. There wasn’t enough federal data to include Staten Island, the coalition noted.
The coalition surveyed more than 250 soup kitchens and food banks in the boroughs, and combined those findings with data from the U.S. Department of Agriculture and the Census.
There are also a higher percentage of hungry seniors in the Bronx than in any other borough — with 19.16 % classified as “food insecure” — or not having consistent access to food — in 2010-2012 — compared to 13.27% in Brooklyn, 11.76% in Manhattan and 7.8% in Queens.
Some researchers employ a nuanced scale to classify the precise degree of food deprivation in a community or household, but the coalition report used only the single category.
Berg said a child who lives in a “food-insecure” household is not necessarily going hungry; the parent may be foregoing meals to ensure the child is fed, Berg said.
The high numbers in the Bronx are partially attributable to unemployment and poverty rates that are the city’s highest, said Iris Mercado, an assistant professor of health education at Hostos Community College.
“The Bronx has the lowest socioeconomic status,” she said. “There are a lot of people on the poverty level, and people who’ve lost their jobs.”
The demand has placed a greater strain on a relief network that’s already being stretched. Among the Bronx agencies queried in the report, 56% reported they didn’t have enough vittles to meet the current demand, and 85% reported they were feeding more people than they did last year.
Nearly 60% of soup kitchens citywide reported they were feeding more people than ever, and 56.8% complained about funding cuts.