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Brigid Langseth, Barney, N.D., Published March 07 2013

Letter: ND Legislature stigmatizes kids

There has been a great deal of discussion about the Legislature’s decision not to fund milk breaks for low-income children, but what I find saddest and most disappointing about the decision is that it leaves out certain children and stigmatizes them. The excluded children may not physically need that extra carton of milk, but even as adults it can be hard to watch others eating or drinking something we would like to have and not have any ourselves.

Even sadder, the children who don’t get the milk can be identified by their peers as “poor,” subtly increasing the risk that they will be bullied or excluded based on status.

These are children with no control over their economic circumstances, and they deserve to be treated with compassion and dignity, as we would all like to be treated.