Senator Stabenow: Michigan First in Nation to Provide Pandemic Nutrition Assistance for Children During COVID-19 Crisis

Thursday, April 09, 2020

U.S. Senator Debbie Stabenow (D-MI), Ranking Member of the U.S. Senate Committee on Agriculture, Nutrition, and Forestry, today announced that Michigan is the first state in the nation to provide additional nutrition assistance through a new program for 750,000 children who lost access to school meals during closures. Stabenow led the effort to ensure the new Pandemic Electronic Benefit Transfer program was included in the Families First Coronavirus Act.


“I’m pleased that Michigan will be the first state to implement this new program to help families put food on the table while schools are closed,” said Senator Stabenow. “During this public health crisis, it is vital that we ensure Michigan children continue to have access to healthy foods.”


“This new opportunity provides greater food security for the families of more than 750,000 Michigan children, most of whom depend on public schools for one or more meals each day,” said State Superintendent Michael F. Rice, Ph.D. “At a profoundly difficult time for children and families, this is a moment of increased hope and support. I appreciate Senator Stabenow’s leadership to help make this happen for our children.”


The Pandemic Electronic Benefit Transfer program provides funds for food to households with children who have lost access to free and reduced price meals in schools. Michigan is the first state in the country to receive approval to operate this program.