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Hunger Free Oklahoma Launches LEARN Workshop to Amplify Perspectives of Those Experiencing Food Insecurity

To amplify the voices of those who experience hunger and food insecurity, Hunger Free Oklahoma is launching the Lived Experience and Resource Network (LEARN) Workshop that includes a paid eight-month program beginning September 2024 for Tulsa and surrounding area residents.

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Capitol Insider: Latest News on Food Insecurity Policy & Advocacy (June 2024)

The Oklahoma Legislature adjourned from regular session on May 30, 2024, one day before constitutionally required. Since then, the Governor signed the budget and many additional bills into law. While the legislative session is over, there were several missed opportunities to invest in improving food security for Oklahomans. We will continue our work in the interim to build a better understanding of the issues for state legislators.

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Group of people smiling for the camera with legislator in US Capitol setting

Congressional Visits: Making Advocacy Easy and Accessible

On June 5, a team representing Hunger Free Oklahoma (HFO), the Food Bank of Eastern Oklahoma, and the Regional Food Bank of Oklahoma went to Washington, D.C. where they discussed the upcoming Farm Bill with our Oklahoma delegation. For several, it was their first time to make Congressional visits. Here is a glimpse into some of their experiences, proving that anyone passionate about these issues can engage with their elected officials.

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State Capitol ceiling

Capitol Insider: Latest News on Food Insecurity Policy & Advocacy (May 2024)

Budget negotiations seem to be drawing to a close, just in the nick of time as the Legislature’s May 31 deadline to adjourn sine die swiftly approaches. Last week, House and Senate leaders reported reaching an agreement on the Fiscal Year 2025 budget, and even scheduled sessions on Memorial Day to tie up loose strings before the end of the week.

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A group of diverse people stand on the front steps of the Oklahoma State Capitol building.

Politics Take a Back Seat to Hunger at Anti-Hunger Day at the Capitol

“Fight for the things that you care about. But do it in a way that will lead others to join you.” – Ruth Bader Ginsburg

This quote hangs in my office as a daily reminder to myself and others. A reminder that true advocacy is not just about fighting for what matters to you – it is about inspiring others to join the conversation. Justice Ginsburg’s words are especially important in reflection of Anti-Hunger Day at the Capitol.

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More than 100 people gathered in the rotunda of the Oklahoma State Capitol building.

Capitol Insider: Latest News on Food Insecurity Policy & Advocacy (April 2024)

It’s a busy week at the Capitol! February 26 and 29 are the first series of deadlines for filed legislation to make it out of committee. While it’s still early in the session, after this week we’ll have a better idea of which bills stand a fighting chance to make it all the way to the Governor’s desk.

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State Capitol ceiling

Capitol Insider: Latest News on Food Insecurity Policy & Advocacy (March 2024)

It’s a busy week at the Capitol! February 26 and 29 are the first series of deadlines for filed legislation to make it out of committee. While it’s still early in the session, after this week we’ll have a better idea of which bills stand a fighting chance to make it all the way to the Governor’s desk.

Read more »
State Capitol ceiling

Capitol Insider: Latest News on Food Insecurity Policy & Advocacy (February 2024)

It’s a busy week at the Capitol! February 26 and 29 are the first series of deadlines for filed legislation to make it out of committee. While it’s still early in the session, after this week we’ll have a better idea of which bills stand a fighting chance to make it all the way to the Governor’s desk.

Read more »
State Capitol ceiling

Capitol Insider: Latest News on Food Insecurity Policy & Advocacy (November 2023)

Winds of change bring us cooler temperatures and a swift conclusion to the 2023 special session Governor Stitt requested on tax cuts and budget transparency. As we look ahead to the end of the calendar year, advocates will be focusing on the smattering of remaining interim studies scheduled in the coming weeks, a few special elections, and eagerly awaiting December 8 and January 18 deadlines for bills to be requested and filed for 2024’s Legislative Session.

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A graph showing the prevalence of food insecurity in households with children, 2001-22.

Hunger Free Oklahoma Releases Statement on USDA’s 2022 Household Food Security in the United States Report

The United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) released its 2022 Household Food Security in the United States report this week. The USDA report shows a national increase in food insecurity rates, and state-level data reports Oklahoma’s food insecurity rate is higher than the national average.

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State Capitol ceiling

Capitol Insider: Latest News on Food Insecurity Policy & Advocacy (October 2023)

Winds of change bring us cooler temperatures and a swift conclusion to the 2023 special session Governor Stitt requested on tax cuts and budget transparency. As we look ahead to the end of the calendar year, advocates will be focusing on the smattering of remaining interim studies scheduled in the coming weeks, a few special elections, and eagerly awaiting December 8 and January 18 deadlines for bills to be requested and filed for 2024’s Legislative Session.

Read more »

Hunger Free Oklahoma’s Chief Program Officer Richard Comeau is Awarded an Aspen Institute Food Leaders Fellowship

Richard Comeau, Chief Program Officer for Hunger Free Oklahoma (HFO), was recently welcomed to Aspen, Colorado, where he began his tenure as a Food Leaders Fellow of the Aspen Institute. The 2023 Food Leaders Fellows include entrepreneurs, investors, and civic and nonprofit leaders dedicated to changing the food system to eradicate food and nutrition insecurity, support entrepreneurs and farmers, and push forward sustainable solutions.

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People shopping at a farmers market with a large sign that says We Welcome SNAP Benefits.

SNAP Work Requirements and Exemptions Explained

This year, the most important legislation for addressing food insecurity is being considered by Congress – the Farm Bill. But what is the Farm Bill, really? A bill about farms? Yes, but at a much deeper level than most people might realize.  

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Capitol Insider: Latest News on Food Insecurity Policy & Advocacy (July 2023)

The deadline for Governor Stitt to act on bills sent to him during Special Session was June 1. The Governor signed 344 bills and joint resolutions into law and allowed 15 other regular session measures to take effect without his signature.

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From Farms to Plates: Unveiling the Farm Bill’s Secrets to Tackling Food Insecurity

This year, the most important legislation for addressing food insecurity is being considered by Congress – the Farm Bill. But what is the Farm Bill, really? A bill about farms? Yes, but at a much deeper level than most people might realize.  

Read more »

Capitol Insider: Latest News on Food Insecurity Policy & Advocacy (June 2023)

The deadline for Governor Stitt to act on bills sent to him during Special Session was June 1. The Governor signed 344 bills and joint resolutions into law and allowed 15 other regular session measures to take effect without his signature.

Read more »
State Capitol ceiling

Capitol Insider: Latest News on Food Insecurity Policy & Advocacy (May 2023)

Despite the May 26 deadline for regular session rapidly approaching, work for Oklahoma’s legislators is far from over. House and Senate leadership finally reached an agreement on this session’s vigorously debated education budget.

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Policy Change is Needed to Ensure Food Security for Active Duty Military

The Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) is a federal nutrition program that helps low-income families. Service members that receive the Basic Housing Allowance (BAH) especially struggle to qualify for SNAP, as BAH counts as income when determining SNAP eligibility. Currently, active-duty military access to SNAP is insufficient, and it is imperative that Congress works towards excluding BAH as income for SNAP eligibility.

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Capitol Insider: Latest News on Food Insecurity Policy & Advocacy (April 2023)

With May rapidly approaching, it’s crunch time for many legislators and advocates. April 27 is the deadline for the third reading of any active bills in their opposite chamber, so we anticipate another busy week at the Capitol. Here’s a status update on the remaining bills we’re tracking (including some that have already successfully reached the Governor’s desk!)

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State Capitol ceiling

Capitol Insider: Latest News on Food Insecurity Policy & Advocacy (March 2023)

As the current Congress nears its end, federal lawmakers are negotiating one final spending package that could impact food security programs. At the time of writing, the just-released mega-bill includes:

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