NYC food banks struggle to support rise in demand amid high unemployment rate

Walther Sinche directs pedestrians toward food donations during the COVID-19 pandemic, Tuesday, June 23, 2020, in the Corona neighborhood of the Queens borough of New York. (AP Photo/John Minchillo)

OAN Newsroom
UPDATED 12:21 PM PT – Monday, August 24, 2020

Unemployed New Yorkers are dealing with long waits to receive food as the coronavirus pandemic leaves thousands without work. The line for the La Jornada Food Pantry in Queens reached more than a quarter mile long on Saturday.

La Jornada usually serves roughly 1,000 families a week, but that number has now skyrocketed to 10,000 amid increased unemployment rates due to the ongoing pandemic. The food pantry is struggling to cope with the influx of demand.

“The most important thing we need is that we need the government to help us with the conventional garbage and things like that we didn’t think before that was important, but now is becoming more and more important,” explained Pedro Rodriquez, founder and executive director of La Jornada Food Pantry. “When you feed 10,000 people you can need a lot.”

Several other food banks across the city are facing similar struggles and the Food Bank For New York estimated it has increased overall distribution by more than 20-percent.

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Amber Coakley
Author: Amber Coakley

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