Family and friends gathered yesterday to celebrate Thanksgiving, which reminds many of us of those who are less fortunate. Thanksgiving may be over, but the problem isn’t: Arizona has the dubious distinction of being the eleventh hungriest state in the nation.
Underemployment, stagnant wages, soaring housing costs often mean that low-income families are turning to the regional food banks and local pantries to get enough food to make it to the end of the month – all year long, not just during the holidays.
Here’s a closer look at food insecurity in the Grand Canyon State with data provided by the Feeding America network.
37 million – According to the USDA’s 2019 Household Food Insecurity in the United States report, more than 37 million people in the United States struggle with hunger.
979,170 – the number of people in Arizona who are struggling with hunger
348,550 – the number of children in Arizona who face food insecurity
14% – the food insecurity rate in Arizona
482,358,000 – People facing hunger in Arizona are estimated to report needing $482,358,000 more per year to meet their food needs.
35 – the percentage of people facing food insecurity in Arizona who don’t qualify for SNAP or other nutrition programs
852,000 – the number of Arizonans receiving SNAP benefits
396,000 – the number of Arizona children receiving SNAP benefits
46.1 – the percentage of Arizona households receiving SNAP benefits that have children
91.3 – the percentage of Arizona SNAP recipients who are U.S.-born citizens
274 – the average amount of SNAP benefits that Arizona families receive each month
86.4 – the percentage of Arizona families receiving SNAP benefits that are below the federal poverty limit
$1.70 – Economists estimate that every dollar a household redeems through SNAP generates about $1.70 in economic activity.
4 – the number of Feeding America Food Banks that serve Arizona
97,426,474 – The St. Mary’s Food Bank distributed more than 97 million pounds of food to families and individuals last year
3,100,000 (including 30,000 Arizona) – number of Americans who would lose SNAP benefits under the latest restrictive Trump administration proposal