Food banks distribute free emergency food, face long lines amid crisis
Pittsburgh and other cities are working hard to help those in need
There are many people in need around the world during this time of crisis. People are being laid off of their jobs, and while others may have job security, they are not being paid to be at home. There are also many people who are regularly in need regardless of this pandemic.
Food banks around the United States have been scrambling to provide free emergency food to those who need it. The Greater Pittsburgh Community Food Bank in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania distributed these items last week by a drive-through style service, and hundreds upon hundreds of cars showed up. Those further back in line waited three hours to get their two boxes. Over 1,500 cars of people were helped.
The people in need of food ranged from those already struggling to survive paycheck to paycheck, and others who never thought they would have to visit a food bank. The minimum wage in Pennsylvania is $7.25 an hour, and many of these workers have faced job loss due to this pandemic. Statistics show that nearly 40% of Americans do not have $400 saved in an emergency fund.
This will not be the only distribution, as more are planned around the city. The next big distribution is scheduled for tomorrow Friday, April 10 at PPG Paints Arena, home of their NHL team Pittsburgh Penguins. The Pens are helping to sponsor this event, along with the city police department. The Pittsburgh food bank is prepared to provide about 1,000 cars with two boxes each of non-perishable food.
Anyone without a car is encouraged to contact the food bank and arrange a safe pick up method.
The National Guard has stepped in to volunteer at food banks to help pack boxes. Many food banks around the country have stopped taking in food donations, due to the current health risks. They are ordering truck loads of foods themselves to give out. If you would like to help your own local food bank, you have the option to visit their website and make a monetary donation.
Pennsylvania currently ranks as one of the top states with the highest amount of unemployment applications in the country. Unemployment figures for the entire U.S. currently swell to over 16 million.
Cities across the United States have been in the news for their extraordinary lines at their food banks. Volunteers stay committed to providing help to those in need during these severely difficult times.