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Article: Marian Wright Edelman, The Huffington Post

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Marian Wright Edelman, President, Children's Defense Fund

January 29, 2010 by Marian Wright Edelman, The Huffington Post

If any of us were forced to live in a desert we'd probably find trying to survive in a barren, desolate wasteland difficult. But through a series of public policies and private sector decisions, millions of mostly low-income and minority families in America have been condemned to subsist in vast urban "food deserts" that pose serious health threats to their children. Food deserts, areas with no or distant grocery stores, are generally in communities where most residents can buy food only at "convenience" stores, liquor stores, gas stations, or fast food restaurants that sell foods high in fat, sugar, and salt. Getting to stores that offer a greater variety of foods is often challenging since many families lack cars and many city and state governments have cut back on investments in public transportation. When many Americans are resolving to eat more healthfully in the new year, children and families living in "food deserts" often lack that choice.

 

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