SPRINGFIELD – Legislation sponsored State Senator Paul Faraci aimed at creating a hunger-free campus grant program was signed into law.

“This is a good step in the right direction to address inequalities when it comes to access to food on campus,” said Faraci (D-Champaign). “If we want to help students, we have to make the necessary investments in all different aspects of college.”

Faraci’s legislation aims to address student hunger by providing funding for grants to higher education institutions that have one or more campuses designated as hunger-free campuses. The grants will be used to leverage sustainable solutions, raise awareness of existing services on campus and build strategic partnerships to address food insecurity among students. The legislation also requires each institution to establish a hunger task force to determine strategies for achieving a hunger-free campus in order to be eligible for the grant.

Representative Carol Ammons (D-Champaign) sponsored this measure in the House.

Other states including California, New Jersey, Maryland, Minnesota, Louisiana and Pennsylvania have already adopted customized versions of the Hunger Free Campus legislation. Swipe Out Hunger reports that more than $100 million has been distributed nationwide through the Hunger Free Campus Act, with California alone supporting over two million students.

House Bill 2528 was signed into law on Friday and takes effect immediately.