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Full Text of this Amendment

SA 3746. Mr. SANDERS submitted an amendment intended to be proposed to amendment SA 3500 proposed by Mr. Harkin (for himself, Mr. Chambliss, Mr. Baucus, and Mr. Grassley) to the bill H.R. 2419, to provide for the continuation of agricultural programs through fiscal year 2012, and for other purposes; which was ordered to lie on the table; as follows:

On page 1362, between lines 19 and 20, insert the following:
(a) Findings.--Congress finds that--
(1) the United States has the highest rate of childhood poverty in the industrialized world, with over 1/5 of all children of the United States living in poverty, and almost half of those children living in extreme poverty;
(2) childhood poverty in the United States is growing rather than diminishing;
(3) households with children experience hunger at more than double the rate as compared to households without children;
(4) hunger is a major problem in the United States, with the Department of Agriculture reporting that 12 percent of the citizens of the United States (approximately 35,000,000 citizens) could not put food on the table of those citizens at some point during 2006;
(5) of the 35,000,000 citizens of the United States that have very low food security--
(A) 98 percent of those citizens worried that money would run out before those citizens acquired more money to buy more food;
(B) 96 percent of those citizens had to cut the size of the meals of those citizens or even go without meals because those citizens did not have enough money to purchase appropriate quantities of food; and
(C) 94 percent of those citizens could not afford to eat balanced meals;
(6) the phrase ``people with very low food security'', a new phrase in our national lexicon, in simple terms means ``people who are hungry'';
(7) 30 percent of black and Hispanic children, and 40 percent of low income children, live in households that do not have access to nutritionally adequate diets that are necessary for an active and healthy life;
(8) the increasing lack of access of the citizens of the United States to nutritionally adequate diets is a significant factor from which the Director of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention concluded that ``during the past 20 years there has been a dramatic increase in obesity in the United States'';
(9) during the last 3 decades, childhood obesity has--
(A) more than doubled for preschool children and adolescents; and
(B) more than tripled for children between the ages of 6 and 11 years;
(10) as of the date of enactment of this Act, approximately 9,000,000 children who are 6 years old or older are considered obese;
(11) scientists have demonstrated that there is an inverse relation between obesity and doing well in school; and
(12) a study published in Pediatrics found that ``6- to 11-year-old food-insufficient children had significantly lower arithmetic scores and were more likely to have repeated a grade, have seen a psychologist, and have had difficulty getting along with other children''.
(b) Sense of Congress.--It is the sense of Congress that--
(1) it is a national disgrace that many millions of citizens of the United States, a disproportionate number of whom are children, are going hungry in this great nation, which is the wealthiest country in the history of the world;
(2) because the strong commitment of the United States to family values is deeply undermined when families and children go hungry, the United States has a moral obligation to abolish hunger; and
(3) through a variety of initiatives (including large funding increases in nutrition programs of the Federal Government), the United States should abolish child hunger and food insufficiency in the United States by the 2013.
(c) Report.--Not later than 1 year after the date of enactment of this Act, the Secretary shall submit to the relevant committees of Congress a report that describes the best and most cost-effected manner by which the Federal Government could allocate an increased amount of funds to new programs and programs in existence as of the date of enactment of this Act to achieve the goal of abolishing child hunger and food insufficiency in the United States by 2013.

(As printed in the Congressional Record for the Senate on Nov 15, 2007.)