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Sandy To Mean Greater Struggle For Already Strapped Food Banks

People at a Bronx food bank - Nov. 21, 2012 (credit: Monica Miller / WCBS 880)

People at a Bronx food bank – Nov. 21, 2012 (credit: Monica Miller / WCBS 880)

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Superstorm Sandy

NEW YORK (CBSNewYork) - Food banks were strapped financially before superstorm Sandy, but they’re now trying to cope with even larger groups in need.

WCBS 880’s Monica Miller On The Story

A new report says one in six New Yorkers depends on some kind of food assistance.

Joel Berg of the New York City Coalition Against Hunger said emergency food services are bracing for a spike in clients affected by the superstorm.

“Some of the neighborhoods hardest by Sandy probably are going to have more food [needs] over the next few weeks than they’ve had over the past few years,” Berg told WCBS 880 reporter Monica Miller. “I’m worried about the next few weeks, but I’m far more worried about the next few months, the next few years,” he said.

The problem is, of course, more than home damage or poverty alone. Many people didn’t get paid when their places of work were closed by Sandy or the MTA was out of service and they couldn’t get to work.

“What I can’t afford, they have it available. I come get it,” said a man named Orlando on Wednesday, who was picking out some fresh vegetables at food pantry in the Bronx to help him get by.

Food banks say the best thing to do if you want to help is donate cash.