BAKERSFIELD, Calif. — According to university officials, one in five students at CSU Bakersfield experience food insecurity. Food insecurity is when a person doesn’t have access to affordable and healthy food.
On college campuses this can lead to increased stress, suffering academics, and even drop-out rates. It’s an issue that the university has tried to tackle head on, operating a food pantry that provides students with access to free food each week.
Food insecurity is being addressed at the state level as well with Senate Bill 173, a bill that would make more than 50,000 students eligible for a food assistance program called Cal Fresh, passing unanimously in the California Senate.
Senate Bill 173 is now headed to the State Assembly. If approved, it will be given to California Governor Newsom to either sign into law or veto.
In the meantime, CSU Bakersfield students can use the food pantry Monday from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. and 5 p.m. to 7 p.m., Tuesday 10 a.m. to 1 p.m. and 3 p.m. to 5 p.m., Wednesday 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. and 5 p.m. and 7 p.m., Thursday 10 a.m. to 1 p.m. and 3 p.m. 5 p.m., and Friday 10 a.m. to 3 p.m.