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Tuesday Morning - March 30, 2010

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March 30, 2010

Table of Contents

SNA Comments on Task Force on Childhood Obesity

Senate Agriculture Committee Holds Meeting on Child Nutrition Reauthorization Bill

Action Alert: Healthy, Hunger-Free Kids Act

Congressional Resolution Introduced in Support of Global Child Nutrition Month

Jamie Oliver’s Food Revolution to Premiere Friday Night on ABC

TANF Funds Available to Improve Participation in Summer Food Service Programs

SNA Legislative Action Center

Legislative Toolkit

SNA Submits Comments on Task Force on Childhood Obesity

SNA has submitted comments in response to a Federal Register request for information to assist in guiding the newly created ask Force on Childhood Obesity. The comments outline the activities SNA is engaging in to help improve nutrition awareness and reverse the problem of childhood overweight and obesity. Some of the activities discussed are part of SNA’s pledge to First Lady Michelle Obama’s Let’s Move! Campaign. These include:

  • Increase the number of school nutrition programs that have achieved U.S. Department of Agriculture’s HealthierUS School Challenge;
  • Encourage school nutrition directors to partner with the Centersfor Disease Control and Prevention’s Coordinated School Health Programs to improve the school health environment;
  • Challenge school nutrition program directors to accelerate the time frame for meeting the Institute of Medicine’s (IOM) National Nutrition Standards for school meals; and
  • Advance nutrition education opportunities for all students.

To read SNA’s written comments, please click here: http://www.schoolnutrition.org/Blog.aspx?id=13774&blogid=622

Senate Agriculture Committee Holds Meeting on Child Nutrition Reauthorization Bill

The Senate Committee on Agriculture, Nutrition, and Forestry held a meeting on March 24, 2010 to mark-up the Healthy, Hunger-Free Kids Act of 2010, the child nutrition reauthorization bill introduced by Committee Chairman Blanche Lincoln (D-Ark.) last week. The Committee unanimously approved the legislation, moving it onto consideration by the full Senate. Several amendments were offered during the mark-up hearing, including a Manager’s Amendment that included several technical changes to the bill. To view the other amendments that were passed, click this link: http://www.schoolnutrition.org/Blog.aspx?id=13760&blogid=622

The School Nutrition Association appreciates the efforts of Chairman Lincoln and the Senate Agriculture Committee to advance legislation that promotes good nutrition and expands access to these crucial programs for children in need. This reauthorization bill offers a strong first step towards strengthening these programs and acknowledges the need for increased funding.

While the legislation would boost funding for the federal child nutrition programs by $450 million per year, including a performance-based 6 cent increase in the federal reimbursement rate for school lunches, additional efforts are needed to reach the $1 billion per year increase requested by President Barack Obama.

Action Alert: Support Child Nutrition Reauthorization 2010!

On March 17th, Senate Agriculture Committee Chairman Blanche Lincoln (D-Ark.) introduced the Healthy, Hunger-Free Kids Act, the draft Child Nutrition Reauthorization bill. SNA supports this legislation, which is a strong first step toward strengthening these programs and acknowledges the need to increase funding for school meals.

While the legislation would boost funding for the federal child nutrition programs by $450 million per year, including a performance-based 6 cent increase in the federal reimbursement rate for school lunches, additional efforts are needed to reach the $1 billion per year increase requested by President Barack Obama.

Please take a moment to send a letter to your Senators and Member of Congress, asking them to support adequate funding for the school nutrition programs. Visit the link below for a sample letter you can send.

Also, consider inviting your Senators or Member of Congress to visit your school nutrition program during Congress’ April recess, March 29 through April 9. Inviting your Congressional representatives to see your school nutrition program in action is a great way to showcase the good work you are doing and to illustrate the need for the practical changes included in Senator Lincoln’s bill. For information and tips on hosting a cafeteria site visit, please visit the link below.

Tell Congress: Support Child Nutrition Reauthorization!

Cafeteria Site Visits 101 (pdf)

USDA to Highlight Obama Administration Efforts to Improve School Meals

Secretary of Agriculture Tom Vilsack announced on March 23, 2010 the USDA’s decision to hold a series of school nutrition events across the country this spring. This timely series will highlight the Obama Administration’s efforts to improve school meals while the Child Nutrition Act is still under consideration by Congress. USDA leaders will use this series to educate participants about the steps taken to reduce hunger and improve the nutrition of children in the United States. Participants will include school nutrition professionals, school officials, community and advocacy members, federal, state and local officials, as well as parents and students.

The first stop in the series will be during the week of April 5th. Food, Nutrition and Consumer Services Undersecretary Dr. Janey Thornton will visit Little Rock, Arkansas. The next location for the school nutrition event will be South Carolina on April 13, 2010 by Food and Nutrition Service (FNS) Administrator Julie Paradis.

To see the full list of dates and locations for the school nutrition events, please follow this link:
http://www.usda.gov/wps/portal/!ut/p/_s.7_0_A/7_0_1OB?contentidonly=true&contentid=2010/03/0144.xml

Jamie Oliver’s Food Revolution Premiered Last Friday Night on ABC

School meals were a major focus during the two-hour premiere episode of Jamie Oliver’s Food Revolution, which aired on Friday, March 26. A best-selling cookbook author and British chef, Oliver has launched the series to “change the way America eats, in our home kitchens, schools and workplaces.”

The program features Oliver’s efforts to transform the dietary habits of Huntington, West Virginia. During the first episode of the six part series, Oliver failed to highlight significant improvements made by school nutrition programs nationwide or to fully address the true challenges facing school nutrition professionals as they prepare meals that must meet strict federal nutrition guidelines. Despite limited budgets, school nutrition programs are continually working to improve the nutrition and quality of school meals. School nutrition professionals are hopeful that these issues will be further explored in future episodes.

Jamie Oliver’s Food Revolution has generated significant local and national media attention, with Oliver recently appearing on several high profile news shows. SNA encourages members to use the resources below for local community outreach about nutritious school meals, and to post comments about healthy school meals on the discussion boards found at the official website for Jamie Oliver’s Food Revolution.
Click here to read SNA’s press release in response to the show: http://www.schoolnutrition.org/Blog.aspx?id=13742&blogid=564

Click here to read the full article:
http://www.schoolnutrition.org/Blog.aspx?id=13763&blogid=622

Congressional Resolution Introduced in Support of Global Child Nutrition Month

The Global Child Nutrition Foundation (GCNF) is pleased that Representative Jo Ann Emerson (R-MO) introduced a resolution dedicating April as Global Child Nutrition Month on March 19, 2010. H. Res. 1202 acknowledges that as many as 300 million of the world’s children suffer from poverty and hunger and supports the necessity of school meals as a means to break the cycle of hunger.

In remarks submitted to the Congressional Record, Representative Emerson thanked the GCNF and the School Nutrition Association (SNA) for “their work in increasing awareness of the problem global hunger presents and for raising funds to help feed hungry children.” She noted that both GCNF and SNA work with school nutrition professionals across the United States to educate students and teachers about childhood hunger.

Please support Global Child Nutrition Month this April! The Change Our World Campaign is one way you can support Global Child Nutrition Month in your community. Please visit http://www.gcnf.org/ or contact Nicole Bernard at nbernard@schoolnutrition.org if you would like to support GCNF during Global Child Nutrition Month.

The full text of the Resolution can be found here:
http://thomas.loc.gov/cgi-bin/query/z?c111:H.RES.1202:

http://www.opencongress.org/bill/111-hr1202/text  

Extensions of Remarks:
http://thomas.loc.gov/cgi-bin/query/D?r111:28:./temp/~r111sxIIWt::

TANF Funds Available to Improve Participation in Summer Food Service Programs

The U.S. Department of Health and Human Services’ (HHS) Administration for Child and Families (ACF), and the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s (USDA) Food and Nutrition Service (FNS), are collaborating to assist communities in providing children with nutritious meals during the summer. Temporary Assistance for Needy Families (TANF) funds are available through the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act (Recovery Act) and can be used to help families through the Summer Food Service Program (SFSP).

States can receive an 80 percent reimbursement for a range of expenditures, including the cost of compensation for staff support to provide supervision and programming at summer feeding sties, transportation services to transport food and/or children to feeding sites, recreational activities to attract children to program sites, and meal preparation costs that are not otherwise reimbursed under the SFSP.

For the full news release: http://www.usda.gov/wps/portal/!ut/p/_s.7_0_A/7_0_1OB?contentidonly=true&contentid=2010/03/0148.xml  

State and Federal Legislation (login required)
State legislation can now be accessed on the Internet through Netscan. Use Username: schoolnutrition and Password: sna

Click State Legislation Instructions for steps to access state legislation through the service. Legislatures currently in session include: California, District of Columbia, Federal, Illinois, Massachusetts, Michigan, New Hampshire, New Jersey, New York, North Carolina, Ohio, Pennsylvania, Rhode Island, Wisconsin


 
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