New York City Council Header
File #: Res 0170-2018    Version: * Name: DOE to offer kosher and halal meals in the Summer Meals Program.
Type: Resolution Status: Committee
Committee: Committee on Education
On agenda: 2/14/2018
Enactment date: Law number:
Title: Resolution calling upon the New York City Department of Education to offer kosher and halal meals in the Summer Meals Program.
Sponsors: Mark Levine, Adrienne E. Adams
Council Member Sponsors: 2
Attachments: 1. February 14, 2018 - Stated Meeting Agenda

Res. No. 170

 

Resolution calling upon the New York City Department of Education to offer kosher and halal meals in the Summer Meals Program.

 

By Council Members Levine and Adams

Whereas, New York City is facing an increasing crisis of poverty and hunger; and

Whereas, According to Hunger Free America (formerly the New York City Coalition Against Hunger), the City’s emergency food providers (food pantries and soup kitchens) reported a 6% increase in need for their services in 2017, on top of an increased demand of 9% in 2016, 5% in 2015, 7% in 2014, and 10% in 2013; and

Whereas, Further, the Coalition's latest annual survey of hunger conducted in 2017 found that 13.9% of New York City residents - over 1.1 million - are food insecure, including 19.1% of children; and

Whereas, Most of these children have access to free, nutritious breakfast and lunch during the school year at City public schools; and

Whereas, According to the New York City Department of Education (DOE), the Office of School Food serves approximately 850,000 meals a day to students, of which more than 700,000 are provided at no charge; and

Whereas, When school is out during the summer months, thousands of children lose access to free and low-cost school breakfast and lunch; and

Whereas, However, the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) funds a summer food program to ensure that low-income children continue to receive nutritious meals when school is not in session; and

Whereas, The free Summer Food Service Program (SFSP) - commonly known as Summer Meals - provides free breakfasts and lunches throughout New York City to all children 18 years old or younger; and

Whereas, Summer Meals are prepared and supplied by the DOE’s Office of School Food (SchoolFood) and served at schools, parks, pools, community centers, libraries, food pantries and soup kitchens throughout New York City; and

Whereas, In an effort to reach as many children as possible during the summer, SchoolFood deploys four mobile food trucks which visit beaches, parks, and playgrounds throughout the city to handout free, delicious, and nutritious lunches to all children 18 years old and under, with no registration, documentation, or ID required; and

Whereas, Despite these efforts, the needs of some children and youth are not adequately met by the Summer Meals program; and

Whereas, In particular, dietary needs of Jewish children who follow Judaic dietary laws and Muslim children who follow Islamic dietary laws are not currently addressed in the Summer Meals program; and

Whereas, Judaic dietary laws delineate foods that are kosher, meaning fit for consumption, and those that are treif, meaning torn or unfit for consumption; and

Whereas, Treif foods include pork and its by-products, meat and poultry not slaughtered according to the Judaic dietary law, meat mixed with dairy, shellfish and grape products not made according to Judaic dietary law; and

Whereas, Similarly, Islamic dietary laws delineate foods that are halal, meaning lawful or permitted, and those that are haram, meaning not permitted; and

Whereas, Haram foods include pork and its by-products, meat and poultry not slaughtered according to the Islamic dietary law, alcohol and foods prepared with and containing alcohol, foods containing blood and blood by-products, and foods containing whey prepared with non-microbial enzyme, rennet, animal shortening, monoglycerides and diglycerides from an animal source, sodium stearoyl lactylate, and L-cysteine; and

Whereas, New York City children who follow Judaic and Islamic dietary laws would benefit immensely if kosher and halal meals were offered in the Summer Meals Program, which is funded by the USDA; now, therefore, be it

Resolved, That the New York City Council calls upon the New York City Department of Education to offer kosher and halal meals in the Summer Meals Program. 

 

 

LS# 5823/ Res 850-2015

LS# 1176

JA

1/4/18