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Dear Members of Congress,

Independent Women’s Voice, which fights to enhance people’s freedom, opportunities and well-being, supports the Protecting Kids, Protecting Lunches Act, introduced by Rep. Debbie Lesko. 

In May of 2022, the Department of Agriculture announced that schools participating in the National School Lunch Program, which provides nutrition assistance to underprivileged students, must now include gender identity in their discrimination policies and must investigate any allegations of such discrimination. In practice, this means that any school that distinguishes between male and female risks having its school lunch funding pulled. 

The Protecting Kids, Protecting Lunches Act prohibits the Secretary of Agriculture from withholding funding from schools for maintaining single-sex spaces such as sports teams and locker rooms. Additionally, it prevents the Department of Agriculture from requiring that biological males be permitted into those spaces.

As our Women’s Bill of Rights states, there are legitimate reasons to distinguish between the sexes with respect to athletics, locker rooms, restrooms, and other areas where biology, safety, and/or privacy are implicated. Threatening to pull taxpayer-funded meals from low-income students if their schools do not embrace gender-ideology activism is shameful and yet another attempt to use our schoolchildren as pawns in pursuit of a radical political agenda.

We thank Representative Lesko for her leadership on this important issue. IWV applauds this bill⁠—which takes a stand not just for students who rely on the school lunch program, but for all women and girls⁠—and urges all members of Congress to work towards its swift passage.


Carrie Lukas
Vice President
Independent Women’s Voice