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Hunger Affects All Parts of L.A. County, Report Finds

June 03, 2004|Richard Fausset | Times Staff Writer

Nearly a third of Los Angeles County's 2.6 million poor adults suffer from a "lack of assured access to enough food," and an estimated 214,000 of them are hungry, according to a report released today.

The report, issued by UCLA's Center for Health Policy Research, shows that the 775,000 adults in the county who have been hungry or flirted with hunger are spread across urban and suburban landscapes.

The percentage of low-income adults at risk of hunger in the Antelope Valley was 38.5%, the highest percentage of any region in the county. The San Fernando Valley had the highest number of adults at risk of hunger, with 129,000, the study showed. By comparison, nearly 115,000 poor adults in the metro L.A. area have worried about where their next meal is coming from, according to the study.

Coauthor Charles A. DiSogra said the report revealed the "hidden problem" of hunger in suburban Los Angeles. "You think of the misconception of seeing people on the street or in Central L.A. ... [but] one of the things this study showed that really surprised us was that there's really no part of Los Angeles County that's not touched by this," said DiSogra.

The study was based on more than 12,000 phone interviews between November 2000 and September 2001.

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