More schools are shutting down due to coronavirus

Food advocate Tom Colicchio says schools shutting poses food security problems.
4:27 | 03/12/20

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Transcript for More schools are shutting down due to coronavirus
And of course is not just sports programs closing but schools as well here in New York City. Two more public schools join the more than 15100 K through twelve schools across the country. That have or plan to shut down due to this virus not poses a big problem. Not only for many other factors but for families who rely on free or discounted school meals for their children. Celebrity chef and owner of crafted hospitality time clicking is here with more on that Tom thanks for being here this is such an interesting angle that a lot of people probably don't think about. But I find it interesting that you are scheduled to speak at SXSW. About universal access dental lunches the event gets canceled because of this virus but this virus seems to have made this issue. Even more import. Right yet that that's that panel discussion with who corps was really about this the quality of lunches and through the looking at had to that how to Henne get your more nursery in coming to school lunches this is a whole different issue. Currently there are thirty million children use our school our public school one system 22 million are on free or reduced lunch so these kids if if we. Can continue to see. This disease continues spread. In schools are closed down. Families that rely on their kids getting breakfast and launch these programs are knock only killed feeder children. And we know that good nutrition is is also part of staying healthy and we are kids healthy as possible fend this off. And so how do you do that all right now in the snap program there is no mechanism to increase the amount of benefits that you've received. There is disaster relief and disaster A which loosens restrictions so more people can receive snapped but there's currently no mechanism to actually increase the amount of dollars. The dollars needed to offset. Breakfast and luncheon and so there's a bill right now as part of the the Democrats house bill. That actually provides nutrition. In this case and increases not benefits. I'd just before art came on air I read that senator McConnell leader McConnell said he will not take this bill up he's going on vacation. Going on recess and so I think right now this is where we need leadership. We need leadership from our our our our our elected officials to constant have to focus on this issue and make sure. That the most vulnerable people in in our society are not gonna really really pay the price here. What would you like to see from the government what's the fix here both the government and Ken private sector companies stepped in to help as well I I don't I don't think so this is this is an issue that's way too big for charitable responsive. Yes their heart there the USDA has loosen the restrictions on community feeding. That's great but but until the opera Kasagic so great that they're one. Volunteers won't be able to go there plus we're trying to avoid can keep people in areas where there there there's a lot of people and so these Judy feeding. Senators where there could be thousands of people not the best way to go about this people need money so they can go shopping. Ending mean they need money in their accounts they can actually get ahead of this they can stock their shelves and get ready for what's about to come. And what's your advice for families who are dealing with the spam is to have food security concerns. Is there anything they can do right now or people around them that meant want to help what's your advice to them. I think my advice right now in this discount. You. They're trying but call your representative right now tell it passed this bill get on the phone to leader McConnell and tell him not to go on vacation. And this is. This is where citizens need to stand in the demanded the government respond and react. In this isn't in it you can't wait for. For listed to come from the top down this is where citizens need to step up and make sure that were protecting most rural people world we've done a great job or shredding our social safety net the last. 12030 years this is where we're we're going to see that this idea of shrinking government down. To the size of it can be drowned in a bathtub is not working we need a pig massive government response to this. Right time click give thanks for calling our attention to an issue a lot of people probably don't realize is happening these thank you. And I'll do it for us today remember to stay with ABC news live all day for the latest updates on the corona virus. And you can get more from ABC news prime tonight at 7 PM I'm Diane Macedo thanks for watching everybody. See you can mean.

This transcript has been automatically generated and may not be 100% accurate.

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