We hosted an event Friday December 1st to talk about food insecurity (food insecurity is defined as: inadequate or insecure access to food because of financial constraints. People experiencing food insecurity: 1) worry about having adequate amounts of food, 2) do not eat suitable quality or selections of foods, 3) and/or have inadequate amounts of food)
Here are some tidbits and some of the presentations (at the bottom of the page) from Friday:
- Food insecurity is bad news for people’s health across the board- whether diabetes, heart disease, dental issues, high blood pressure, depression/anxiety, asthma- people are both more likely to have chronic conditions and less able to manage those conditions.
- This is unjust and unfair but it is also associated with huge costs in health care dollars, the more severe the food insecurity= the more costly ($1608 health care dollars used up for those who are food secure; $3930 health care dollars used up for those who are severely food insecure.
- People who are food insecure don’t lack SKILLS (cooking, budgeting) compared to people who are food secure. Although this is a common misconception.
There ARE policies that exist (or have existed) that have had an effect on decreasing food insecurity (and therefore on poverty). We can see that they worked. We need to advocate for change at this level.
Stay tuned for our next post on what advocacy can look like!
-Dr. Valerie Tarasuk (from PROOF) shared a researcher’s perspective on food insecurity. She framed the problem for us with evidence and then spoke about what communities can do. Click here for her presentation.
-Carolyn Doris talked to us about Nourish Peterborough and some of the work that Peterborough Public Health has done. Click here for her presentation.
-Jane Shrestha spoke about the Simcoe Muskoka District Health Unit’s campaign called Cent$less. There are valuable resources including videos, personal stories, advocate and donate postcards, letter templates for MP, MPP and the premier, posters etc, on their website.