The independent student newspaper at the University of Illinois since 1871

The Daily Illini

The independent student newspaper at the University of Illinois since 1871

The Daily Illini

The independent student newspaper at the University of Illinois since 1871

The Daily Illini

The independent student newspaper at the University of Illinois since 1871

The Daily Illini

Budzinski introduces Grocery, Farm and Food Stabilization Act

On Tuesday, Rep. Nikki Budzinski introduced the Grocery, Farm and Food Stabilization Act, which aims to protect food supply chains and prevent disruptions during disasters. 

During the COVID-19 pandemic in 2021, the Department of Agriculture created the Farm and Food Workers Relief Grant Program to aid frontline food workers with “pandemic related health and safety costs,” per a press release. 

“The first of its kind, the FFWR Grant Program distributed nearly $680 million in competitive grant funding to meat processing, grocery store, and farm workers for expenses incurred due to the COVID-19 pandemic,” the statement said. 

However, FFWR was a one-time grant, and the Grocery, Farm and Food Stabilization Act, a bicameral legislative initiative with Sen. Sherrod Brown, hopes to create a permanent program in the case of disasters. 

Budzinski stressed the importance of strengthening support for grocery, farm and food workers. 

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“The COVID-19 pandemic showed the fragility of our food system and shed light on the challenging conditions faced by our … frontline food workers,” Budzinski said in a statement. “I’m proud to be introducing bicameral legislation with Senator Sherrod Brown to ensure that our frontline food workers have the safety net they need.” 

Brown shared Budzinski’s sentiments, noting how communities in his state are affected by the act during emergencies. 

“During a disaster, workers at grocery stores, farms and meatpacking plants are essential to making sure that Ohioans have access to safe food,” Brown said in a statement. 

Receiving support from United Food and Commercial Workers International Union, Marc Perrone, international president of the organization, expressed his gratitude for Budzinski and Brown’s efforts. 

“We applaud Senator Brown and Representative Budzinski for introducing this vital legislation that will provide critical funding for essential work during times of crisis and strengthen Americaʼs food supply chain over the long run,” Perrone said in a statement. 

 

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Jessie Wang, Senior News Reporter
Hi! My name is Jessie and I’m a junior majoring in CS + philosophy. I am an assistant news editor, and this is my third semester with The DI. I’m super excited to be part of our lovely newspaper! Feel free to contact me at my email below if you want to chat.
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