Senator Stabenow Statement on USDA Efforts to Help Children, Families in Flint

Today’s Announcement Ensures More Families Have Access to Lead Testing, Expands Access to Healthy Foods for Flint Children

Wednesday, February 10, 2016

U.S. Senator Debbie Stabenow, Ranking Member of the U.S. Senate Committee on Agriculture, Nutrition and Forestry, today released the following statement applauding the United States Department of Agriculture for taking additional steps to help low-income families in Flint.

“I thank President Obama and Secretary Vilsack for responding to my request to help the people of Flint,” Stabenow said. “USDA is stepping up to help ensure children and families in Flint have access to critical health resources and nutritious foods during this crisis. I will continue to do everything in my power to help Flint during this emergency.”

The announcement, made in Flint by Dr. Kathryn Wilson, Deputy Under Secretary for Food, Nutrition, and Consumer Services in Flint, would expand access for Flint children and families in three key ways:

  • Gives flexibility to the Michigan Department of Health and Human Services to allow the estimated 3,800 WIC participants in Flint to use a portion of their WIC funds to pay for blood tests to detect possible lead exposure. 
  • Enables the Michigan Department of Education to ensure all children in Flint affected by this crisis have access to nutritious school meals through the Community Eligibility Program.
  • Allows the Michigan Department of Education to expand eligibility for children in Flint to participate in the Summer Electronic Benefits Transfer (EBT) meal program later this year.

For more information on today’s announcement, as well as further actions taken by USDA to help families and children in Flint, CLICK HERE.