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Attorney General Donovan Announces Impact of Vermont Legal Community Fighting Hunger Food Drive

July 1, 2020

Contact: Megan R.H. Hereth. Assistant Attorney General, 802-828-3171

Following the close of a two-week collective effort, Attorney General T.J. Donovan, Elizabeth Novotny, President of the Vermont Bar Association, and John Sayles, CEO of the Vermont Foodbank, announced the positive impact of the Vermont Legal Community Fighting Hunger Food Drive. For the past three years, the Vermont Foodbank, the Vermont Bar Association (VBA), the Attorney General’s Office (AGO), and many other law offices throughout the state have run the Lawyers Fighting Hunger Food Drive during Hunger Action Month each September. The COVID-19 pandemic has caused a steep increase in food insecurity for Vermonters. The AGO, VBA, and Vermont Foodbank hosted the food drive early this year and as a collective effort to put food on Vermonters’ tables in this time of crisis.

In the two weeks of this year’s virtual food drive, professionals across the Vermont Legal Community together raised $8,611.49. All funds donated went directly to the important work of the Vermont Foodbank. In the four-year history of the food drive, the Vermont Legal Community has raised more than $43,000.00 and, in previous years, collected over 11,000 food items.

“Now, more than ever, Vermonters are struggling to keep food on their tables,” said Attorney General Donovan. “I’m proud that members of Vermont’s legal community were able to come together in this collective effort to help our friends, neighbors, and families struggling in this state. I thank the Vermont Foodbank and the Vermont Bar Association for partnering with my office on this important issue.”

“The Vermont Bar Association is pleased to collaborate again this year with the Vermont Attorney General’s Office and with Vermont Foodbank to raise funds in order to help Vermonters in need,” said Elizabeth Novotny, President of the VBA Board of Bar Managers. “I’d like to thank the participating legal professionals throughout Vermont for their generosity, and to thank the Attorney General’s Office and Vermont Foodbank for the opportunity to work together to combat hunger in Vermont. Vermont lawyers are also pleased to offer free or reduced COVID-19 related legal services in these challenging times. Information is available on the website under ‘For the Public.’”

“With 46% more people struggling with food insecurity because of the pandemic, we are facing a truly unprecedented time,” said John Sayles, CEO of the Vermont Foodbank. “Fortunately, our community is stepping up in monumental ways to show that together we can fight hunger and take care of those in need. We are deeply grateful for the generosity of the Vermont legal community in helping ensure that all of us have access to the food we need during these challenging times.”