WIC program may be no more - 14 News, WFIE, Evansville, Henderson, Owensboro

WIC program may be no more

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A Tri-State community is reacting to news about the WIC Program that may shut down.

The Vanderburgh County Health Department says a lack of funding may force the closing of the Woman, Infant, Children's Program at the end of September.

Rhonda Jones is a concerned citizen who says she utilized the WIC Program when she was pregnant and raising infants.

"When I couldn't afford milk for my children, my babies, they give you milk and cheese and eggs," said Jones. "Now, they're giving you fruit and vegetables."

The State of Indiana is cutting funding for 'Fringe Benefits;' That includes the WIC Program.

"They use to fund those 100%," said Chairman of the Health Department Board of Directors, Bob Stayman. "The state has decided they can now fund them only to the extent of 50%, which makes administering the program a fiscal impossibility for us."

Stayman says cuts in the grants for the program will not allow the Health Department to pay WIC employees.

"It's out hope that if the programs stays in existence, it will be bid out in some social, local social service agency that serves the needy community and can take over it," said Stayman.

He says the WIC issue needs to be addressed by October 1 or else WIC in Vanderburgh County will be no more.

"I think there are a lot of other programs that they could get rid of rather than that," said Regina Hunt. "It's very important."

Nothing is set in stone yet.

It remains to be seen if WIC will be taken over by another agency.

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