Columnist Matt Driscoll got it right when he wrote about food deserts in Tacoma-Pierce County (TNT, 4-14).
In low-income, low-access communities, families struggle to allocate limited resources. Cheetos and chips are cheaper and closer to folks in the East Side than is fresh produce. There is a correlation of incidence of obesity and chronic diseases associated with the income levels and resources of neighborhoods.
Food banks that offer nutritious food are one way of mitigating these disparities. Folks are able to use their limited funds to pay for basic cost of living when there is access to a food bank nearby.
Those of us who have had the privilege of serving people who use food banks hear stories every day. South East FISH Food Bank is in the center of the barren landscape. Ask any client or volunteer whether or not food deserts are real.
(Mowat is president of the FISH Food Banks of Pierce County board.)