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The Record March 18, 1988; FRIDAY; ALL EDITIONS

Copyright 1988 Bergen Record Corp.

March 18, 1988; FRIDAY; ALL EDITIONS
LENGTH: 452 words

Actor Knows Hunger Of Table

SOURCE: Wire services

Michael E. Hill, Washington Post News Service

It's been awhile, about 20 years, since WACO, Model Cities, and the Great Society were buzzwords in Danny Glover's ears. But it all came back to him when he saw the script for A Place at the Table.

Glover's place at the table is just barely above the salt in this tidy one-hour NBC Family Special airing at 7 p.m. Sunday on Channel 4. The cast is headed by Susan (L. A. Law) Dey and David (St. Elsewhere) Morse. And there's young Lukas Haas, who earned his stardom as the title character in Witness, which also featured Glover.

Dey, Morse, and Haas and his two siblings are a family facing hard times after Morse has lost his job. The family is rescued when one of Haas' classmates, played by Jenny Lewis, spots the family in line at a soup kitchen. She turns for help to her mother, Jean (Designing Women) Smart, and teacher Glover.

(Table is one of a pair of movies this week focusing on families' falling into and possibly through the social and economic safety net.

Monday night, ABC offers God Bless the Child, starring Mare Winningham and Grace Johnston as a mother and daughter caught in the Catch-22 of being homeless because the mother is out of a job, and unable to find work because she has no home.). For Glover, Table has a special feeling attached to it. "It's one of those projects that you do because it'll have an impact on a problem hunger, often not acknowledged.... There are kids who are hungry who you don't detect, yet it affects their behavior and disposition."

The U. S. Department of Agriculture representative Thursday criticized the movie, saying it does not acknowledge the existence of the national school lunch program, which provides meals for needy schoolchildren.

Glover says he saw a lot of social problems up close when he was a student at San Francisco State College in the mid-Sixties. As urban renewal was working its way through western San Francisco, he was involved in WACO (Western Addition Community Organization), counseling renters about their rights as they faced displacement. Later he worked in the mayor's office of community development and with the Model Cities program.

In the Seventies, he was part of a Black Panther-sponsored program, Breakfast for Children, which later, he recalled, was adapted and adopted as a government program.

Glover grew up in the Haight-Ashbury district and still lives there. His father, a retired postal worker, and his late mother, he recalled, set an example of community involvement working in church and civic organizations and stressed education: His mother was the first in her family to attend college.

GRAPHIC: Photo - Danny Glover, left, Lukas Haas, and David Morse star in A Place at the Table, Sunday on NBC.

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