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Vancouver Food Policy Council passes motion supporting Poverty Free Action Week

The following motion was approved at the Vancouver Food Policy Council meeting January 18, 2017 and is provided in advance of the minutes being circulated to Mayor and Council.

  1. Motion from Right to Food Working Group on Food Insecurity

MOVED by Stephanie Lim

SECONDED by Zsuzsi Fodor

WHEREAS 1.7 million Canadian households, including over a million children, experience food insecurity;1 in British Columbia, 1 in 10 households, representing 485,000 individuals, experience food insecurity2 and a total of 5% of Vancouver households report being food insecure;3 and

WHEREAS the Vancouver Food Charter endorses the position that “Food is a basic human right. All residents need accessible, affordable, healthy, and culturally appropriate food”;4 and 

WHEREAS the Vancouver Food Strategy references the growing income gap as a key vulnerability in the local food system,5 and calls on the City of Vancouver to, “Support the provincial government in creating a comprehensive antipoverty program that brings attention to the links between food, health and income”;6 and

WHEREAS the Healthy City Strategy states “Income is a strong determinant of health and well-being. While Vancouver is a growing, thriving city, we also have high poverty rates, and many people struggle to make ends meet”;7 and 

WHEREAS food security organizations and poverty reduction initiatives acknowledge that sustainable and adequate sources of income for households are key to achieving sustainable food security. 

BE IT RESOLVED THAT, in conjunction with the 2017 Poverty Free BC Action Week (February 25-March 4), the Vancouver Food Policy Council recognizes and affirms the connection between food security and income security and calls upon the City of Vancouver: 

  • To act in its own capacity to address the link between income and food security in their poverty reduction initiatives and food policies;
  • To advocate that the Federal and Provincial governments address the link between income and food security in their poverty reduction initiatives and food policies;
  • To introduce motions at the Union of BC Municipalities and the Federation of Canadian Municipalities which call upon member municipalities to address the link between income and food security in their poverty reduction initiatives and food policies.

CARRIED UNANIMOUSLY

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1 Laura Track, Hungry for Justice: Advancing a Right to Food for Children in BC (March 7, 2016). https://bccla.org/our_work/hungry-for-justice-advancing-a-right-to-food-for-children-in-bc/   

2 PROOF Food Insecurity Policy Research, Priority health indicators for British Columbia: Household food insecurity indicator report (August 2016). http://www.phsa.ca/population-public-health-site/Documents/Household%20food%20insecurity%20in%20BC_full%20report.pdf  

3 City of Vancouver, What Feeds Us: Vancouver Food Strategy (January, 2013), 28. http://vancouver.ca/files/cov/vancouver-food-strategy-final.PDF  

4 City of Vancouver, Vancouver Food Charter (January 2007). http://vancouver.ca/files/cov/Van_Food_Charter.pdf  

5 City of Vancouver, What Feeds Us: Vancouver Food Strategy (January 2013), 28. http://vancouver.ca/files/cov/vancouver-food-strategy-final.PDF  

6 City of Vancouver, What Feeds Us: Vancouver Food Strategy, (January 2013), 122. http://vancouver.ca/files/cov/vancouver-food-strategy-final.PDF  

7 City of Vancouver, Healthy City Strategy: Our Goals: Making Ends Meet and Working Well (2015). http://vancouver.ca/people-programs/healthy-city-strategy.aspx