Our Veterans Shouldn’t Go Hungry

One out of four women Veterans struggle with hunger


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Our nation’s Veterans fought for our freedom. They shouldn’t have to wonder where their next meal will come from.

In 2018, the U.S. Department of Agriculture found that 14.3 million U.S. households did not have consistent access to food that year. Studies have shown women Veterans are more likely to struggle with hunger than male Veterans. As many as 27.6% of women Veterans suffer. To put things in perspective, in one study of women Veterans using 12 VA hospitals, one out of four women Veterans reported lacking the money or other resources to reliably feed themselves or their loved ones.

Screening Veterans for hunger

To address this issue, the Veterans Health Administration (VHA) began screening Veterans for hunger in 2017. From 2017-2018, VHA has screened more than 3 million Veteran patients and either connected those in need to social workers who can help or to nutrition safety net programs.

VA can connect Veterans to programs such as the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP), the Special Supplemental Nutrition Program for Women, Infants, and Children (WIC), and emergency food sites, such as food banks and pantries. Between 2015 and 2017, SNAP helped 1.4 million Veterans put food on the table.

For help, contact your local VA Medical Center to get connected to the resources you need. And if you are a woman Veteran, ask your local VA Medical Center for the Women Veterans Program Manager.

Author

Hans Petersen

Hans Petersen is senior writer-editor for Digital Media, VHA Office of Communications. An Air Force Veteran, Hans also served two years in the Peace Corps and worked for 20 years in broadcasting before joining VA.

Comments

  1. Thomas Howard II    

    Yeah we shouldn’t. But we do. Shouldn’t go into debt paying for surgery to fix an injury sustained in war. Did that one too. Twice. Shouldn’t be looked at or down upon or treated like a second-class citizen. That’s a thing too. Shouldn’t fight years for scraps of ‘benefits’ only to get letters saying they will be taken away the VA doesn’t get their money within 30 days. Can’t wait to see what new horrors await once I lose the 516 that’s my only income since I was forced to resign for something I didn’t do because this is fact-given enough time everyone looks at you different and assumes something, or asks stupid questions about how many people you killed. Then, they fire you for not smiling enough. You think I’m joking? I’m the guy in South Huntsville, AL selling everything I own just to have power on Christmas and hopefully see my children. Shouldn’t have gotten my identity stolen, but hey that’s been fun. Then the IRS comes after your house, that shouldn’t happen either. But it did. All the while, everyone is saying the VA will help. Help what? Help me wait six months for an appointment, tell me I need surgery or risk paralysis, then help me find the door since my medical records vanished? They can pay Tom Hanks to parade in front of the camera, or the CEO of T-Mobile to smile for the camera, but they can’t be bothered with Combat Infantryman Tom Howard who can’t even verify his own identity anymore because theft, greed, and abuse are the American Dream now! The politicians only fight for us when they want more votes, and the VA has done more harm than good, but what do I know about the state of Veteran Affairs? I’m just an unemployed loser with PTSD who brought down the error rate 85% at his last place of employment then spent Independance Day hungry and begging for food. Yay, America! That’s my reward for faithful service and sacrifice to my country. My reward for standing up and fighting with my brothers. Shouldn’t go hungry, but do.

    No one should go hungry. Everyone should help their brothers and sister as we are ALL in this together. I went to war in 2005, but the real war began when I came home. Shouldn’t be told you wished we had died in war, but just like how I wish I had dinner last night, we can’t always get what we want.

  2. vincentgrymko    

    shameful, especially since SO MUCH food is Still thrown out before expired by supermarkets, that Veterans centers could be collecting and be given to Veteran families in need!!

  3. Jerry G Palmertree    

    We get snap last year it went from $195.00 to $126.00 because of a $11.00 cola raise. Just got notice it snow dropping to $116.00. Between power and water and wife’s medical bills with her being on total disability and my small SS check we do not have nothing left over. We are told we do not need to eat box or can items due to health reasons. But that all you can afford. Oh our Income level is below the guide line

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