Meal-debt policies that humiliate kids
NewRepublic, July 4, 2017
“The cash register woman says to this 4-year-old girl, verbatim, ‘You have no money.’” A milk carton was taken away, and the girl’s food was dumped in the trash. She did not protest, other than to walk away in tears.
These lunchroom practices humiliate children at public school districts across the United States.
The U.S. Agriculture Department is not specifically barring most of the embarrassing tactics, such as serving cheap sandwiches in place of hot meals or sending students home with conspicuous debt reminders, such as hand stamps.
Children often bear the brunt of unpaid meal accounts. A 2014 federal report found 39 percent of districts nationwide hand out cheap alternative meals with no nutritional requirements and up to 6 percent refuse to serve students with no money.
Child advocacy groups question whether schools should be allowed to single out, in any way, a child whose family has not paid for meals.
“There’s no limit to the bad behavior a school can have.” said Jennifer Ramo, the executive director of an advocacy group on poverty issues.
New Mexico Sen. Michael Padilla, who was raised in foster homes and vividly recalls having to sweep and mop the lunchroom to earn meals at an Albuquerque public school, said “It’s shouldn’t be that way. This should not have to be a thought for a child.”
Federal cash subsidies feed two out of three students statewide — yet meals still go unpaid, school administrators say. Extreme poverty of children is likely to drive up school districts‘ unpaid meal costs.
The Albuquerque school district is still weighing whether it can afford to serve the same hot meal to all students and do away with an alternative cold meal that has been nicknamed derisively the “cheese sandwich of shame.”
Здешние политиканы, «эксперты», подконтрольные ЦРУ СМ»И» нахваливают псевдодемократическую, якобы процветающую Америку.
Те, кто любит «наших американских (государственных) партнеров», «забывают» о грязных, злых уродах США. О таких, как коварный и крайне опасный мошенник, расист, лжец, неофашист и убийца Дональд Трамп. И о таких, как порочный Конгресс, кровавые милитаристы США, нацистские ФБР — ЦРУ, лживые американские СМ”И”…
Арнольд Локшин, политэмигрант из США