Canada's candidates for the upcoming federal election need to pay close attention to the growing Eat, Think, Vote movement that's calling on the government to create a comprehensive and effective national food policy.
Canada faces a food crisis.
Four million Canadians don’t know where their next meal will come from. One-third of elementary school kids and two-thirds of high school students don’t have a healthy breakfast before school. The Arctic North is plagued with astronomical food prices, limited availability, and very little assistance from the federal government. Farmers are facing a succession crisis, with the majority wanting to retire in the next 10 years and nobody to replace them.
Despite being a modern, developed nation, Canada has failed to address food insecurity in a number of ways, and stands to suffer serious consequences if it continues to do so. The country needs a national food policy, and the creation of such a policy must receive attention in the weeks leading up to the federal election on October 19.
A group called Eat Think Vote is calling all Canadians to sign a petition that makes it clear to politicians that food matters and that continuing in the current vein is not an option. The petition makes four specific requests that would be addressed in a new national food policy.
1) We want zero hunger in Canada.
2) We want a national healthy school food program.
3) We want affordable food in the North.
4) We want support for new farmers.
Eat Think Vote is also organizing events across the country to raise awareness, generate discussion within communities, and put pressure on federal candidates to address these issues. You can search your postal code to find events nearby or use the group’s online resources to host your own event.
You can sign the petition here and spread the word on social media, using the #EatThinkVote hashtag. The more voices calling for change, the more closely Canada’s politicians will have to pay attention.