Sen. Ernst helps out at diaper bank in Davenport, renews bipartisan push for diaper assistance

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U.S. Senator Joni Ernst (R-IA) joined Iowans at the Davenport Special Supplemental Nutrition Program for Women, Infants, and Children (WIC) office today to help distribute diapers to Iowans as part of a Hiney Heroes of the Quad Cities’ drive-through diaper bank. Ernst’s visit follows her bipartisan effort to support low-income families and front line workers who are in critical need of diaper assistance.

“A clean diaper is a basic, essential element for protecting the health and well-being of every young child,” said Senator Ernst. “Unfortunately, during COVID-19 we’ve seen an increased demand for diapers, but a decreased supply at our diaper banks, often due to stockpiling. Our workers and families should not have to worry about having access to diapers, and that’s what I’m working to address.

“Seeing firsthand the work of the folks at Hiney Heroes re-emphasized the importance of supporting Iowans in need of diaper assistance so they can provide for the health, safety, and economic security of their children.”

“Every day, our diaper bank works to help local families struggling with diaper need,” said Karree Fah, executive director Hiney Heroes of the Quad Cities. “Pre-COVID, studies showed that 1 in 3 families struggled to provide enough diapers to keep their baby clean, dry and healthy. Due to the economic impact of COVID, more of our friends and neighbors need help. We are grateful that Senator Ernst could join us today to see first-hand the work we do, and we thank her for recognizing diaper need as a public health issue and advocating for federal funding to support emergency diaper distribution programs here in Iowa and throughout the country.”

“Because of COVID-19, the number of US families struggling with diaper need has reached levels we have never seen before as a Network, and in the past three months diaper banks have expanded their efforts to serve more families than ever,” said Joanne Goldblum, CEO of the National Diaper Bank Network. “The majority of diaper banks are distributing two to four times the number of diapers than they did prior to the pandemic and continuing to do so is not sustainable on their own. We greatly appreciate Senator Ernst’s leadership in fighting for $200 million in funding to bolster the vital work of diaper bank programs. This critical funding would provide much needed relief for families across the country struggling to meet their basic needs amidst the economic distress created by the pandemic.”

“Huggies is committed to helping end diaper need in America and we applaud the work of Hiney Heroes for today’s event distributing diapers to families in need,” said Robert Raines, General Manager for Huggies North America. “We also thank Senator Ernst for supporting congressional efforts to ensure that families in need have access to clean diapers.”