May 1979

The WIC Program or 'The Perils of Pauline'

Author Affiliations

St Jude Children's Research Hospital 332 N Lauderdale PO Box 318 Memphis, TN 38101

Am J Dis Child. 1979;133(5):478-480. doi:10.1001/archpedi.1979.02130050022003

On Nov 10, 1978, President Carter signed into law S-3085, the Child Nutrition Amendments of 1978, which contain provisions for the continuation of funding for the Special Supplemental Food Program for Women, Infants, and Children (WIC). Characteristically, it was like another scene from "the Perils of Pauline" in the history of this adventure-filled program. The Office of Management and Budget was urging the President to veto the bill and it seems that only the last-minute intervention by a coalition of groups interested in child nutrition saved the day for WIC by urging the President to sign the bill.

The history of the WIC program began in the late 1960s. Between 1968 to 1970, three studies of the nutritional status of the poor in this country were done.1-3 The findings of all three of these studies were similar. Although no gross evidences of vitamin deficiencies or severe protein-calorie deprivation were

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