NY’ers Say Lower Income Neighbors Face Significant Food Challenges

Food access and assistance

NY’ers Say Lower Income Neighbors Face Significant Food Challenges; Affordability, Meal Planning, Access & Transportation
Nearly Half Donate Food or Dollars to Address Hunger; 18% Volunteer Time
12% Receive Food from Pantry or Program; 17% Use SNAP or WIC
Virtually All Agree: ‘In NY, No One Should Go HUNGRY’

Loudonville, NY – Large majorities of New Yorkers say that lower income people in their area face at least somewhat, if not very, significant challenges regarding food and hunger in being able to afford nutritional food, knowing how to plan healthy meals, having convenient access to healthy food and having adequate transportation to stores according to a special Food Security Survey released today by the Siena College Research Institute. Forty-nine percent donate food, 45 percent made a monetary contribution to a charity focused on hunger and 18 percent donated their time at a pantry or drive at least somewhat often over the past twelve months.

About one out of every eight New Yorkers has in the last year received food from a local pantry or meals program with half of those doing so somewhat or very often. More, 17 percent, have received government assistance from programs like SNAP or WIC with just under one in ten New Yorkers doing so very often.

“Ninety-six percent of state residents agree, most strongly, that here in the Empire State, no one should go hungry,” said SCRI Director Don Levy. “Nearly one in five volunteer their time at a pantry or food drive at least somewhat often. But, while nearly half donate either food or money over the course of the year, only just over one in ten of us do so very often.”

New Yorkers earning less than $50,000 a year both receive food from a local pantry or meals program and receive governmental food assistance at much higher rates. Among those lower income residents, 28 percent have used food pantries or programs and 40 percent have benefitted from governmental assistance.

The Siena College Research Institute conducted this Special Food Security Poll in collaboration with Food Pantries for the Capital District.

Natasha Pernicka, Executive Director of The Food Pantries, commented on the survey’s findings:

“We are grateful to have the opportunity through this research to learn more about the opinions of New Yorkers concerning hunger and the availability of nutritious food. With 14 percent of New Yorkers struggling with having adequate food resources, according to a 2016 report from Feeding America, these are important issues that deserve more attention from us all. We plan to further raise awareness about the impact inadequate food resources are having upon those struggling to feed themselves and to encourage community members to reach out if they are seeking food assistance or would like to get involved to help.”

For more information:

518-458-1167 or www.thefoodpantries.org

This Special Siena College Food Security Poll was conducted March 1-15, 2017 by telephone calls conducted in English to 804 New York State residents. Respondent sampling was initiated by asking for the youngest male in the household. It has an overall margin of error of +/- 4.3 percentage points including the design effects resulting from weighting. Sampling was conducted via a stratified dual frame probability sample provided by Survey Sampling International of landline and cell phone telephone numbers from within New York State weighted to reflect known population patterns. Data was statistically adjusted by age, region, gender and race/ethnicity to ensure representativeness. The Siena College Research Institute, directed by Donald Levy, Ph.D., conducts political, economic, social and cultural research primarily in NYS. SCRI, an independent, non-partisan research institute, subscribes to the American Association of Public Opinion Research Code of Professional Ethics and Practices. For more information or comments, please call Don Levy at 518-783-2901. Survey cross-tabulations can be found at www.siena.edu/scri

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