Help children learn!  Make school lunch universally free for every New York City student!
  • Petitioning Bill de Blasio

This petition will be delivered to:

Mayor of New York City
Bill de Blasio

Help children learn! Make school lunch universally free for every New York City student!

    1. Petition by

      Lunch 4 Learning Campaign

      New York, NY


Join the Lunch 4 Learning Campaign and Public Advocate Letitia James to ensure that all students are well-nourished and ready to learn.  We call on Mayor de Blasio to offer free school lunch to all New York City public school students, regardless of income. 

 Making this change will de-link school food with family income and will get rid of the shame and poverty stigma that greatly impacts participation, especially as children get older:

  • Student lunch participation drops with age: 81% in elementary, 61% in middle school, and 38% in high school
  • 75% of New York City school students are eligible for free lunch (income under $36,000 for a family of 3)
  •  Despite need, one-third of the 780,000 students currently eligible for free school lunch don’t participate, largely because of the poverty stigma

We are asking the Mayor to take immediate action:

Step 1: Institute citywide universal free lunch immediately by ending the collection of student fees. No state or federal permission is required.

 Step 2:  Maximize federal incentive programs that minimize paperwork for schools and maximize federal reimbursements (Provision 2 & Community Eligibility Provision).

We believe that New York City should make the small investment needed so that no student has to pay for a meal.  This will have broad citywide impact on reducing student hunger, improving health, and boosting educational outcomes.

Recent signatures


    1. Reached 2,500 signatures


    Reasons for signing

    • Tricia Greenidge BROOKLYN, NY
      • about 1 month ago

      Having a good meal is part of the learning process when children are hungry they will not be able to focus on their work. the reality is many families work and many families can not meet their daily needs food being a part of it. packing a daily lunch may not be in the budget of many families. NYC schools should provide lunch for children.

    • Anita Kanitz STUTTGART, GERMANY
      • 3 months ago

      " serving the best interests of children, we serve the best interests of all humanity."

      -- Carol Bellamy

    • Eric Zuesse WHITING, VT
      • 4 months ago


    • Sabrina Skelton BRONX, NY
      • 4 months ago

      This is important to me because I was a child who's parent had to pay for lunch and it wasn't always easy.

    • Mary Couri BALTIMORE, MD
      • 4 months ago

      As a Social Worker and a NYC ESL teacher I believe that reducing the social stigma of free lunch and meeting this most basic need of the children is truly a step in the right direction for reducing the education gap.


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