Hunger Task Force sees drop in demand during cold weather

WAUWATOSA (WITI) -- An area food pantry is seeing a significant drop in demand during the cold weather as frigid temperatures are keeping more and more people indoors.

The Hunger Task Force says after a spike in November and December, winter is typically a slower time of the year for them. But when the temps start rising once again, so will the demand for food.

"The cold weather has also affected food pantries. It's closed the Hunger Task Force a couple of times and it's also prevented people from leaving their houses," said Sherri Tussler.

Workers say they are concerned about what may happen to those who use their services come this spring.

"There's no question that this year has been colder and this year there would be more usage by the typical residential customer," said Brian Manthey with We Energies.

"What's going to happen to people who may end up with the utility cut off or disconnected after the moratorium is lifted?" asked Tussler.

Tussler is worried many low-income families may get behind on utility payments and find themselves using all of their funds to catch up -- with little leftover for food.

"Maybe if you're right on the edge, maybe if you don't have enough money to pay your utility bill, and you're thinking about giving up your food-buying money to pay your utility bill, think about applying for food stamps right now," Tussler said.

Low-income families in need of assistance are urged to contact the welfare center or Hunger Task Force for help.