Ensure Iowa Participates in Summer EBT in 2025

Gov. Kim Reynolds

Hunger and food insecurity are at crisis levels in Iowa right now, with food banks and food pantries breaking records constantly. Meanwhile, the state of Iowa decided not to participate in the Summer EBT program in 2024. Hundreds of thousands of low-income kids would have benefited from this program. Let Gov. Reynolds know: Iowans can't afford to sit out on Summer EBT again in 2025!

To: Gov. Kim Reynolds
From: [Your Name]

We, the undersigned, urge you to take action to ensure Iowa’s participation in the Summer Electronic Benefit Transfer Program for Children (Summer EBT), also known as SUN Bucks. We urge your administration to submit an interim Plan for Operations and Management (POM) to the United State Department of Agriculture (USDA) by August 15, 2024, to allow Iowa to begin drawing down administrative matching funds to implement the program in summer 2025.

Summer EBT would provide $120 in nutrition benefits to 245,000 children who qualify for free and reduced price school meals in the state of Iowa during the summer months. Summer EBT is a tried and tested program, with pilot projects gathering evidence on the program’s positive impact since 2011. In a final summary report of these demonstration projects, USDA Food and Nutrition Service found that providing a monthly Summer EBT benefit reduced childhood food insecurity, increased consumption of fresh fruits, vegetables, whole grains, and dairy, and did not increase consumption of sugar sweetened beverages.

With food banks, food pantries, and other anti-hunger groups facing record-breaking numbers of Iowans turning to them for assistance, and school meal debt rising, Iowans cannot afford another summer without SUN Bucks. Summer EBT is a common sense, evidence-based policy for addressing childhood hunger and food insecurity.