Despite Legislative Setbacks, Efforts To End “Lunch Shaming” Move Forward

Giddings_SmallAUSTIN, TX – On May 9, Rep. Helen Giddings (Dallas) gave an impassioned personal privilege speech regarding HB 2159, which would have ended a practice known as “lunch shaming” in Texas schools. Since then, she has worked with legislators from both parties, seeking a legislative path forward. Unfortunately, the bill designed to give students some relief was derailed by a hand-full of legislators.
Representative Giddings offered appreciation to all of those who fought with her on this effort.
“I am so pleased to have worked with Rep. Bernal, Sen. Miles, Sen. Lucio, Sen. Taylor and the vast majority of the members of the legislature who supported this effort. Working alongside them and Feeding Texas has been wonderful, yet I know there is more we must do for these children.”
“We applaud Representative Giddings and all who helped push this important issue into the legislative spotlight,” said Celia Cole, CEO of Feeding Texas, the statewide network of food banks. “We owe it to their efforts to continue raising awareness and supporting schools that treat hungry children with dignity and compassion.”
Representative Giddings and Feeding Texas understand that without legislative action, we must do more to end the fight for hungry kids. Offering a path forward, Rep. Giddings said the following:
“After my speech on the House floor, we were overwhelmed by the tweets, Facebook posts, emails, letters, and calls to my office. Most indicated they were not aware of this harmful practice that is so devastating to our children. Almost universally, the question asked was “what can I do to help?” We have communicated with over 200 individuals and associations who are committed to doing their part for our children. As a result, I am delighted to partner with Feeding Texas to launch an extraordinary campaign to raise money for unpaid lunch accounts of children in need.”
All Texans will have the opportunity to contribute directly to the fund at feedingtexas.org/schools.
Rep. Giddings continued, “Research indicates one of the primary impediments to learning is hunger. We can eliminate the pain of hunger in our schools. Our children do not need heroes… they just need compassion.”