Anti-Hunger Advocates Recognize Governor Cuomo’s Efforts to Fight Hunger
OTDA’s Tom Hedderman accepts the “Anti-Hunger Champion” award at the NYS Anti-Hunger Conference
May 08, 2015 - Governor Andrew M. Cuomo was recognized on May 7th by Hunger Solutions New York with its “Anti-Hunger Champion Award” for his commitment to ending hunger in New York State. The nonprofit advocacy group announced the award during its 2015 New York State Anti-Hunger Conference in Albany. OTDA’s Tom Hedderman, Director of Food & Nutrition Policy, accepted the award on the Governor’s behalf.
Under the Governor’s leadership, New York has taken significant steps to extend food assistance to New Yorkers in need.
“Governor Cuomo has consistently demonstrated his steadfast commitment to alleviate hunger for New Yorkers,” said Linda Bopp, Executive Director of Hunger Solutions New York. “The lives of hungry New Yorkers have been improved by the Governor’s consistent and courageous actions. These actions enhance the health and well-being of individuals, families, and entire communities all across this great State.”
“As the agency that oversees the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) in New York State, I can assure you the Governor’s focus on this issue is unwavering,” said Sharon Devine, Executive Deputy Commissioner for the Office of Temporary and Disability Assistance. “SNAP has been particularly effective in reducing food insecurity, but the Governor has rightly recognized a comprehensive approach is needed in order to accomplish our shared goal.”
Hunger Solutions New York is a statewide non-profit dedicated to alleviating hunger for all New Yorkers.
In 2011, Governor Cuomo launched the FreshConnect program, which brings fresh, locally grown food to underserved communities. The FreshConnect program includes projects such as youth markets, delivery of products to low-income housing facilities and new initiatives at traditional farmers markets.
The Governor also ended the finger imaging requirement for SNAP applicants and recipients in 2012, simplifying the application process and removing a barrier to reducing hunger for children and adults.
At the end of 2013, Governor Cuomo announced the creation of the Anti-Hunger Task Force, a statewide effort to bring together experts, advocates, and government officials to focus on ending hunger and increasing access to local foods in New York State. In 2014, Governor Cuomo preserved a total of $457 million in federal SNAP benefits for approximately 300,000 vulnerable households in New York.
The Governor committed an additional $4.5 million in the Executive Budget this year to bolster the state’s emergency food system, which will help 2,600 emergency food providers to support the more than 3 million New Yorkers who access such programs each year.