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Even with help from food stamps and a federal nutrition program, nearly half of U.S. households receiving such benefits struggle to feed their families.
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Arizona has the some of the strictest guidelines in the nation for welfare benefits. Tucson mother Jessala Grijalva can usually get what she needs for herself and her three children, but she’s found some surprising exceptions.
Picture of Lenzy Krehbiel-Burton
Trump's new budget wants to replace a portion of food stamp benefits with a box of "shelf-stable" items. For Native families who have endured such government-issued provisions in the past, that's a horrifying prospect.
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Uncertainty about proposed budget and policy changes in Washington have put low-income and working families — and the programs and agencies that serve them — on high alert.
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Arizona tends to try out new approaches and programs, but rarely sticks with such efforts long enough to bring about change.
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It's those first 1,000 days — from conception until a child's second birthday — that the brain most needs the right mix of nutrients to fully form. But programs that focus on such developmental goals are now at risk.
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In the U.S., social welfare benefits tend to impose tight restrictions on recipients. But in Manitoba, low-income pregnant women can receive a no-strings-attached cash boost. Research suggests it leads to healthier babies.

Picture of Lenzy Krehbiel-Burton

Nationwide, one in seven families experience food insecurity at any given point in a year. The rates are higher in Indian Country, increasing the risks for the physical effects that come with poor nutrition.

Picture of Lenzy Krehbiel-Burton

“If you’re not able to provide food, it makes it difficult to feel like you’re living a dignified life,” researcher Darcy Freedman said. “It’s a basic need and the mental health implications are very real. ‘If I can’t provide food for my kids or partner, who am I?’”

Picture of Ryan White

When it comes to getting kids into health coverage, the numbers have never been better. By the first quarter of 2015, the percentage of kids without insurance was less than 5 percent. But despite the gains made in improving children’s coverage, big challenges remain on the horizon.

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