Oregon Food Bank sees increase in need amidst pandemic, wildfires

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The organization estimates that one in four people are struggling to feed themselves or their family.

Posted: Oct 16, 2020 9:18 AM
Updated: Oct 16, 2020 10:33 AM

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PORTLAND, OR (KPTV) -- The Covid-19 pandemic and wildfires across the state of Oregon has sent many people looking for help when it comes to putting food on the table. The Oregon Food Bank says the need has doubled that what they typically see.

“We understand from Oregon State University and from our own experience that hunger has more than doubled since the start of the pandemic,” Oregon Food Bank CEO Susannah Morgan said.

The organization estimates that one in four people are struggling to feed themselves or their family.

“It is heartbreaking, it is so rending to thing that so many of our neighbors and ourselves are at such straights,” Morgan said.

She adds it is important to look at the root cause of why people are turning to the food bank.

“We are also thinking about why does someone miss a meal, and the root cause of poverty,” Morgan said.

According to the Oregon Center for Public Policy, in 2018 one in 10 Oregonians lived in poverty, that’s roughly 516,000 people. Of that forty percent live in deep poverty. Those stats are troubling for people like Morgan who are working to see a decrease in the numbers.

“Poverty itself has root causes, systemic inequities like racism, this is why if your family is black or brown you are more than two time as likely to be hungry,” Morgan said.

She says right now, more than ever it is going to take civic engagement like voting to spark change in society to address the root causes of poverty and ending hunger in the state.

“In order to address them food won’t solve that, so we have to look systemically at how we organize society so that everyone can be included and everyone can prosper,” Morgan said.

Oregon Coronavirus Cases

Data is updated nightly.

Cases: 387485

Reported Deaths: 5116
CountyCasesDeaths
Multnomah59768836
Washington41571393
Marion39592504
Clackamas32426376
Lane29856354
Jackson24672350
Deschutes23182185
Umatilla15087180
Linn14488178
Douglas13236286
Josephine10057240
Yamhill9665142
Klamath8979145
Polk813698
Benton605137
Malheur591586
Coos5573106
Columbia423855
Jefferson416865
Lincoln357252
Union336854
Crook330156
Wasco314846
Clatsop258335
Baker217531
Tillamook214345
Hood River211337
Morrow197025
Curry190136
Harney119332
Grant108314
Lake104016
Wallowa74713
Sherman1903
Gilliam1844
Wheeler1141
Unassigned00

California Coronavirus Cases

Data is updated nightly.

Cases: 5060048

Reported Deaths: 74129
CountyCasesDeaths
Los Angeles152429427102
San Diego4047084319
Riverside3849455306
San Bernardino3718825944
Orange3329505675
Sacramento1674002423
Kern1565171781
Fresno1558992246
Santa Clara1511691922
Alameda1246581500
San Joaquin1070001833
Ventura1036461188
Contra Costa1032921045
Stanislaus912991413
Tulare856141082
San Francisco56614669
San Mateo56058629
Monterey52340625
Solano47422356
Santa Barbara47035548
Merced44807664
Sonoma42912412
Placer41881468
Imperial38128769
Kings35038358
San Luis Obispo31294358
Madera26005311
Shasta25917440
Butte25295309
Santa Cruz22028222
Yolo21451257
Marin18342248
El Dorado18166161
Sutter14494181
Napa13372104
Yuba1070088
Tehama10230129
Humboldt10043117
Nevada9914103
Mendocino848894
Lassen792355
San Benito775977
Tuolumne767790
Lake6990110
Amador573766
Siskiyou470954
Glenn455136
Calaveras435685
Del Norte371242
Colusa323519
Inyo254345
Plumas19127
Mono18294
Mariposa156718
Trinity98817
Modoc7475
Unassigned2430
Sierra2170
Alpine1060
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