December 17, 2022

Duckworth Visits Dion’s Chicago Dream and Discusses Hunger Prevention and Access to Fresh Food


[CHICAGO, IL] – U.S. Senator Tammy Duckworth (D-IL) today visited Dion’s Chicago Dream on the city’s southwest side to underscore her commitment to addressing the food access gap for many of Illinois’s working families. During the site visit, Duckworth and CEO Dion Dawson discussed the organization’s efforts to improve lives by providing fresh, healthy food to Chicagoans who reside in food deserts, and how federal resources can help ensure they can continue that work. Duckworth also met and thanked the organization’s dedicated team including COO Danielle Parker and Operations Specialist Sara Faddah, as well as spoke about her advocacy to help end military hunger. Photos of today’s visit are available here.

“Organizations like Dion’s Chicago Dream make such a difference in the push against hunger,” said Duckworth. “As someone whose family relied on public nutrition programs after my father lost his job, I’m grateful to them and the incredible work they do. I also know that food insecurity and access to healthy, fresh food are systemic issues that disproportionately impact Black, Brown and working Americans, and I’ll keep working to knock down barriers that make folks unable to access essential nutrition. Through working in Congress and with organizations like Dion’s Chicago Dream, we can reduce the number of Americans who have to worry about where their family’s next meal is coming from.”

“We were honored to host Sen. Duckworth at our new office and packing facility today. The Senator and I are connected through our shared experiences of being food insecure as children and witnessing how this epidemic affects military families in particular,” said Dion’s Chicago Dream CEO Dion Dawson. “She is a true champion in the Senate who understands the severity of the food insecurity crisis and works closely with communities to develop lasting, sustainable solutions. Today was just the beginning. I know we can count on Sen. Duckworth as a long-term ally in ensuring Chicagoland residents have reliable access to fresh, healthy food through our Dream Deliveries program.”

Duckworth has long been active in addressing food insecurity, including for our nation’s military families. Right now, far too many military families experience hunger because of unintended barriers that make them unable to access essential nutrition assistance programs. That’s one of the reasons why Duckworth worked to include a provision in the Fiscal Year (FY) 2023 National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA) that amends last year’s Basic Needs Allowance. Her provision would expand the pool of military members who qualify for the support by adjusting the maximum income from 130% to 150% of the federal poverty guidelines, which will enable more military members to access needed nutritional support in the face of growing military hunger challenges. Earlier this year, she also met with Northern Illinois Food Bank representatives to discuss efforts to provide food to the surrounding community.