Avoyelles Parish suspends free student lunch program

AVOYELLES PARISH, La. (KALB) - Avoyelles Parish announced their first case of COVID-19 on Saturday, March 21.

USDA/MGN

Following this announcement, the Avoyelles Parish School Board made the decision to suspend all of their free student meal programs.

Below is the full statement from APSB that was posted on their Facebook Page:

"A conference call was held last night (March 22) with representatives from the Governor's Office, the Louisiana Department of Education and state superintendents. All facets of the school food service program were discussed. The issue is not whether feeding students is important. We all agree that it is. At the same time, staff and employee safety must also be considered.

In one week alone, through the efforts of our dedicated employees and volunteers, we have fed more students than we do in the entire summer.

While this program is important, we must consider the safety and well- being of our employees. Not only is there a shortage of adequate protective gear such as gloves, face masks and thermometers, but we have no idea who may or may not have been exposed to the COVID-19 at this time.

Accordingly, given the shortage of these supplies and to protect both our employees and those who are consuming the provided meals, our school system is suspending these services until further notice.

The state did inform us that they are working with the National Guard and other entities to possibly have their own feeding program up and running by next week."

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