Nebraska lawmakers considering bill to provide free diapers for low-income families

Published: Feb. 14, 2024 at 7:09 PM CST

OMAHA, Neb. (WOWT) – Lawmakers will discuss a bill on Thursday that would provide diapers to low income families across the state.

The Nebraska Diaper Bank is in full support of the bill and told 6 News the need is great.

“Here in Nebraska, one in three families struggle to afford enough clean diapers for their baby,” said Nebraska Diaper Bank CEO Tegan Reed, Nebraska Diaper Bank.

Putting an end to diaper needs — that’s what one bill, LB 1223, in the unicameral aims to do.

“LB 1223 would allocate $500,000 dollars from the general fund to health and human services to create a statewide diaper distribution program for babies across Nebraska, Reed said.

Tegan Reed with the Nebraska Diaper Bank told 6 News she’s been keeping up with LB 1223. She said details about the program, including who will qualify, are still not fully clear.

“But, it would allow them to create a program with some different guidelines so nonprofits like myself could apply for those funds and distribute those diapers to families in need,” Reed said.

Just last year, the nonprofit handed out a total of $2.8 million diapers to 10,000 babies across the state. They say the need is not often recognized.

“I think a lot of people don’t think about diaper need, but if a family is experiencing food insecurity they’re also experiencing diaper need,” Reed said.

Apart from addressing the need, Reed hopes if the bill passes, it will show what organizations like hers are trying to accomplish.

“I hope the bill accomplishes really what our goal as an organization is to provide diapers for babies and families so they have that relief,” Reed said.

The hearing for the bill is set at 1:30 p.m. Thursday at the capitol. Several of the nonprofit leaders will be there to testify in support of the bill.