Education & Information

via Nevada Department of Agriculture

Common sense suggests we should be helping people who are struggling financially, not shaming them. And that goes double for children, who are never responsible for their parents' financial situations. However, in schools across the country, children are often stigmatized for their parents' inability to pay for their lunches.

In New Jersey, students with lunch debt aren't allowed to attend prom. In Pennsylvania, parents are threatened with being turned in to child protective services if they have outstanding lunch debt. In Rhode Island, students who have significant lunch debt are given jelly sandwiches instead of a hot lunch.

In other districts, children are given stamps on their hands that say, "I need lunch money." In some school cafeterias, children's lunches are thrown away in front of the entire cafeteria if they have lunch debt.

Keep Reading Show less