Red Cross, USDA Discuss Impact of Government Shutdown

government shutdown

The government shutdown is over, but it impacted agencies across the country. Several of those organizations gathered at the American Red Cross of Massachusetts Headquarters in Cambridge on Oct. 25 to discuss lessons learned – and how to deal with it again should another shutdown ever occur.

Red Cross CEO Jarrett Barrios welcomed Kevin Concannon, Undersecretary for Food, Nutrition and Consumer Services and James Arena-DeRosa, Regional Administrator for the USDA Food and Nutrition Service, who lead a discussion about the shutdown’s impact.

During the shutdown, Barrios worried the Red Cross Food Pantry would run low on food and not be able to serve an increased demand.

Representatives from the Department of Education, SNAP, Greater Boston Food Bank, St. Francis House, Project Bread, Community Servings, Rosie’s Place, the Office of Children, Youth and Families and the Cambridge Economic Opportunity Committee chimed in, sharing thoughts on the shutdown and tales of how if affected each of their programs.

It was a great meeting of the minds, and a true example of how the dedicated the Commonwealth is to feeding its vulnerable population.