SMITHFIELD, R.I. (WPRI) — Stanley Tree Service is cutting down food insecurity.

The Smithfield-based tree company recently wrote a check for more than $1,300 to pay off the school lunch debt of roughly 200 students.

“It just was a no-brainer,” Bruce Berard, vice president of Stanley Tree Service said. “We all know that food insecurity is becoming a big problem in our country.”

Berard said giving back to the community is what Stanley Tree Service is all about.

“Words can’t describe being able to take care of children and families in your home town,” he said. “It’s not always about receiving, it’s also about giving.”

The Rhode Island Department of Education estimates that roughly 62% of school lunches served statewide are either free or reduced-price.

That’s why Rep. Justine Caldwell is advocating for free school lunches at all public schools statewide.

“Every child needs to be fed during the school day,” Caldwell said. “High-quality, universal lunch in schools is an investment that will pay off in better academic achievement, fewer discipline problems and healthier kids who have a better day at school.”

While families can apply for the free and reduced-price school lunch programs, Caldwell likened it to filing taxes — which isn’t necessarily an easy thing to do.

The qualifications for free and reduced-price lunches are also unrealistic.

“Your parents have to each make less than $9 an hour to qualify for free lunch,” she explained. “Now, minimum wage is $13 an hour.”

It’s unclear at this time how much it would cost to implement Caldwell’s universal school lunch legislation.