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Healthy, Hunger-Free Kids Act signed

Healthy, Hunger-Free Kids Act signed

Using a elementary school as a backdrop, President Obama signed the Healthy, Hunger-Free Kids Act into law on Monday, capping a campaign led by the President and his wife, Michelle, to fight childhood obesity in the

United States.

The new law, which pledges 4.5 billion dollars over 10 years to child nutrition programs, will give thousands more U.S. children access to school meals and allow the Department of Agriculture to set nutrition guidelines for food sold in schools, including in vending machines.

It comes at a time when 17 million U.S. children live in households that have to sometimes skip meals to make ends meet, and one in three US kids is obese or overweight.

Healthy, Hunger-Free Kids Act signed

John McWhorter writes for NPR that although the new Act takes on a problem which all sides would like to solve, it also bases its logic partially on “food deserts.”  These areas, where families and children cannot access fresh fruit and vegetables, are thought to especially affect minority communities or inner city areas.  McWhorter points out that sometimes access is not the problem, its just a preference for certain unhealthy foods.

But does legislation alone garner support for a problem recognized as a real threat to the health of Americans?  Perhaps not when the solution offered is a  political one.  ABC News recently discussed the political figures in support of the legislation and those who are critical of it.

Also, U.S. Secretary of Health and Human Services Kathleen Sebelius spoke with the BBC’s Matt Frei about how the U.S. reached this “sordid state of affairs” in the first place.

Posted by Michael Lucivero.

Photo credit: Official White House photo by Lawrence Jackson.