Billy Shore, CEO of the No Kid Hungry Campaign, and Rhonda Jackson, Louisiana Director of the No Kid Hungry Campaign. Photo: Axios Screenshot

The coronavirus pandemic has exacerbated childhood hunger among many families for the first time, Rhonda Jackson, director of the No Kid Hungry Campaign in Louisiana, said Wednesday at an Axios virtual event.

What she's saying: "Louisiana was one in four children that faced childhood hunger. Now the rest of the country looks like that. And what that looks like in real-time is parents having to make the decision if they’re going to actually feed a kid or if they’re going to have to perhaps buy medicine."

  • "Our governor has been really instrumental in making sure that food and food nutrition was a part of the conversation. Making sure that families were able to provide meals to kids has been a long-standing issue for him. So I think that level, just making sure to work with their local government to make sure the programs are in place," Jackson told No Kid Hungry CEO Billy Shore.
Axios Founder and CEO Jim VandeHei and former first lady of Virginia Dorothy McAuliffe. Photo: Axios screenshot

The big picture: Millions of children in the U.S. arrived at schools hungry even before the pandemic. Now families experiencing economic stress and unemployment are for the first time are seeking services and help to feed their families.

  • "There’s so much unemployment now, folks that never imagined they’d be unemployed are having to turn to food banks and think about SNAP benefits and other community organizations that are helping," former first lady in Virginia and national policy advisor for Share Our Strength Virginia Dorothy McAuliffe, tells Axios CEO Jim Vandehei.

The state of play: Nonprofits and volunteers helping children directly have had to adjust their models to keep people safe during the pandemic by gathering protective equipment, creating drop-off routes for children unable to reach pick-up sites and scaling grab-and-go systems.

The bottom line: McAuliffe said awareness for childhood hunger is key to de-stigmatize the issue and help those find the resources they need. Others can also donate, volunteer or write to an elected official that has policymaking powers, she said.

Watch the event here.

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Sep 18, 2020 - Health

Rep. Khanna: COVID-19 could change the perception of public health care

Rep. Khanna and Axios' Margaret Talev

The universal experience of COVID-19 could change how opponents view Medicare for All, Rep. Ro Khanna (D-Calif.) said at an Axios virtual event on Friday.

What they're saying: "The pandemic has reminded us of our shared humanity with other American citizens. It's no longer possible to think, 'Oh, we're not part of those who get sick.' Now almost everyone knows, unfortunately, someone who has been hospitalized, someone who had a serious bout with COVID," Khanna said.

Updated 58 mins ago - Politics & Policy

Coronavirus dashboard

Illustration: Sarah Grillo/Axios

  1. Global: Total confirmed cases as of 7 a.m. ET: 30,804,120 — Total deaths: 957,348— Total recoveries: 21,062,785Map.
  2. U.S.: Total confirmed cases as of 7 a.m. ET: 6,766,631 — Total deaths: 199,268 — Total recoveries: 2,577,446 — Total tests: 94,211,463Map.
  3. Education: What we overlooked in the switch to remote learning
  4. Politics: In reversal, CDC again recommends coronavirus testing for asymptomatic people.
  5. Health: The dwindling chances of eliminating COVID-19.
  6. World: Guatemalan president tests positive for COVID-19 — The countries painting their pandemic recoveries green.
Sep 18, 2020 - Health

CDC again recommends coronavirus testing for asymptomatic people

CDC director Robert Redfield testifies at a Senate Appropriations subcommittee hearing on Sept. 16. Photo: Anna Moneymaker-Pool/Getty Images

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention updated its previously revised guidance for coronavirus testing on Friday to say that testing asymptomatic people who were exposed to COVID-19 is recommended for treatment and contact tracing.

Why it matters: The CDC's modification in August to recommend against testing for asymptomatic people was not written by scientists and posted despite their "serious objections," New York Times first reported. CNN confirmed that the agency's update was published outside the agency's "normal review process."