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SPLC Action Fund and Coalition Partners Urge Gov. Ivey & State Legislators to Fund Summer EBT Program

MONTGOMERY —Today, in a letter to Gov. Kay Ivey, State Sen. Greg Albritton and Rep. Rex Reynolds, a broad coalition of Alabama advocates, including the SPLC Action Fund, urged state leaders to fund the 2024 Summer Electronic Benefits Transfer (Summer EBT) program. Alabama is one of 15 states now opting out of the program that provides benefits over the summer months for children in households experiencing food insecurity.

The letter notes, “For thousands of kids, summer break signifies the loss of access to school lunches, which often serve as their primary source of nutrition … This failure to provide basic food security for children — the most vulnerable members of our communities — will have repercussions that cannot be ignored.”

In Alabama, an estimated 22% of children under the age of 18 – 240,000 children – were living in poverty in 2022, with 117,000 of those being Black children. According to USDA estimates, more than half a million children are eligible for Summer EBT in Alabama. Based on this number, Alabama would have been eligible to receive roughly $65 million in federal aid distributed to families of children experiencing food insecurity this summer.

Read the full letter HERE.