CLASP Responds to Request for Information: Center for WIC Modernization and Delivery, Docket No. FNS-2021-0038

By Teon Dolby

Food is necessary to live, function and thrive. Therefore, having adequate and accessible food is economic justice. Research reveals that the Special Supplemental Nutrition Program for Women, Infants, and Children (WIC) helps to enhance health and well-being by contributing to economic stability, learning and development, dietary intake, birth outcomes and more. However, many eligible families face significant barriers to redeeming the benefits WIC provides.

Some barriers include:

  • Misconceptions about eligibility
  • Language and cultural barriers
  • Limitations on what WIC foods can be purchased
  • Disparities in food access
  • Time away from work to apply and maintain WIC benefits
  • Expenses related to reaching WIC clinics

CLASP’s comment addresses three of the seven questions posed in the RFI:
(1) What capabilities should the Center have to effectively support State and local WIC agencies in implementing new technology solutions and process changes?
(2) How should the Center evaluate WIC State agency needs and prioritize projects?
(3) How should the Center work with State and local WIC agencies to help them modernize their WIC programs and improve the participant journey through WIC?