Thousands of federal employees and federal contractors in Harvesters’ 26-county service area could be impacted by the federal government shutdown. Other neighbors who receive assistance from federal nutrition programs could see benefits reduced or completely eliminated.
As Harvesters’ mission is to provide food assistance to anyone experiencing food insecurity, Harvesters stands ready to respond to this event.
While federal employees should ultimately receive back pay, once the government reopens, Harvesters’ network will be there to help ease the burden until those impacted can get back on their feet again. It often takes weeks for federal workers to receive back pay. We also know there are contractors who work for the federal government who will also be out of work and will not be getting back pay.
Below is information as we know it currently on the impact to federal nutrition assistance programs, resources available for food assistance and how those who are able to, can support Harvesters’ response efforts.
Impact on Federal Nutrition Assistance Programs
Benefits are already allocated and will be delivered to recipients for December. January would likely be incomplete and disrupted depending on length of shutdown.
Commodity Supplement Food Program (CSFP)
The Emergency Food Assistance Program (TEFAP)
Harvesters has two to three months inventory in-house. These programs will continue as normal in the short-term.
Harvesters does not work directly with the WIC (Women, Infants and Children) program, but that program is expected to run out of funding, unless the states of Missouri and Kansas can cover those costs in the interim. If funding stops or is significantly reduced on that program, women who receive benefits from this program can turn to Harvesters’ network of pantries, mobile distributions and kitchens for assistance.
Get Food Assistance
For immediate assistance, federal employees and federal contractors impacted by the government shutdown can reach out to Harvesters’ network of more than 760 agency partners throughout our 26-county service area.
Harvesters is working to add new mobile distributions to respond to the increased need. Check back soon for dates, times and locations for these.
How to Help
Give Money – Every dollar donated helps provide two meals. If you are interested in specifically sponsoring a mobile food distribution, please contact Harvesters’ director of philanthropy at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Give Food – Donate nonperishable food items in Harvesters barrels at your local Price Chopper or Dillons store. Or host your own food drive and bring donations directly to Harvesters’ Kansas City or Topeka locations.
Give Time – Sign up to volunteer at our Kansas City or Topeka warehouse and help us sort and repackage donations for distributions. Additional opportunities to volunteer at food distributions will be posted soon.
Give Voice – Contact your federal lawmakers and ask them to end the government shutdown or follow Harvesters on social media and share information about how the public can support Harvesters’ response efforts.