Provisions in the stimulus bill will help the 14% who don’t have enough to eat

Joe Biden
President Joe Biden. Stefani Reynolds-Pool/Getty Images
  • A new report found that 14% of adults with children didn’t have enough food to eat in the past week.
  • In addition, 35% of all adults had trouble paying for basic household necessities.
  • Biden’s stimulus plan includes measures to cut child poverty in half and reduce financial hardships.
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Americans are struggling to pay for basic household expenses, like food, rent, and medical services, but with President Joe Biden’s $US1.9 ($2) trillion stimulus plan headed for his desk shortly, households across the country can expect to see relief.

In a report released on Wednesday by the Center on Budget and Policy Priorities, a progressive think tank, it found that based on Census Bureau data, millions of Americans are still struggling to meet their basic needs a year into the pandemic. In data collected between February 17 and March 1, 14% of adults with children and 11% of all adults did not have enough food to eat over the prior seven days, and 4% of adults with children reported that their household did not have enough to eat at some point in 2019.

“Providing more supports in food, housing, income, and other areas to struggling families can make an important difference in their children’s lives now and in the long term, research shows,” the report said. “Conversely, financial instability, inadequate food, or unstable housing can harm children and shortchange their potential in areas such as health, school completion, and future earnings.”

Labor-market weakness is a main reason for those hardships, the report said, and provisions within the American Rescue Plan will significantly relieve many households from those hardships.

For example, in another CBPP analysis released on Wednesday, it said the plan will “dramatically reduce hardship” through provisions like extended unemployment benefits, expansions in the child tax credit, increased housing assistance, and more.

The report also found that:

  • 28% of renters with children and 19% of all renters were not caught up on rent;
  • 41% of adults with children and 35% of all adults had difficulties covering basic needs – food, rent and mortgage, and medical services – in the past week;
  • And about four in 10 children living in rental housing live in a household that doesn’t have enough food or is not caught up on rent payments.

With regard to child poverty, researchers from Columbia University projected that Biden’s stimulus plan would cut child poverty in the country nearly in half by providing parents with $US3,600 ($4,627) per child. Insider previously reported that this will dramatically change families’ relationship with the government for at least the duration of the stimulus, set to last through 2021.

Biden said in a statement on Wednesday that he plans on signing his stimulus bill into law on Friday, which is “a people’s law at the people’s house.”

-President Biden (@POTUS) March 10, 2021

He said: “This legislation is about giving the backbone of this nation – the essential workers, the working people who built this country, the people who keep this country going – a fighting chance.”