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Group raising awareness around food insecurity as election nears

'Municipalities can play a key role in strengthening our food system and improving our access to food,' says Simcoe County Food Council official
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NEWS RELEASE
SIMCOE COUNTY FOOD COUNCIL
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The Simcoe County Food Council (SCFC) is pleased to announce the release of their 2022 Municipal Election Toolkit to help raise awareness about household food insecurity and community food access, in advance of the municipal elections happening on Oct. 24, 2022. From affordable living and reliable transportation, to recreation and waste management, municipal elections can have a significant impact on a community’s overall health and vitality.

The toolkit was created to help community organizations and members understand the role municipalities have when it comes to producing, accessing and learning about food in their community. The toolkit also provides an overview of the key issues, recommendations, and questions for candidates – to help ensure a sustainable, resilient local food system that is affordable and accessible for everyone living in Simcoe County.

“Rising inflation coupled with the challenges we’re seeing with food supply and wages and social assistance rates remaining stagnant, makes life very difficult for many people living in Simcoe County. People have less disposable income, and the rising cost of food, gas, and housing makes money decisions very difficult. Sadly, this often means people are living with less food,” said Courtney O’Neill, community co-ordinator, Simcoe County Food Council.

“Municipalities can play a key role in strengthening our food system and improving our access to food. Simcoe County's municipalities are uniquely positioned to play a more significant role in agriculture due to their rich history of food production. When municipalities work with all levels of government, they can be leaders in the food system and food access work, and build on their history of supporting agriculture, agri-tourism, urban agriculture, and food literacy initiatives.”

The toolkit was created by members of the SCFC and community partners and is made up of resources to enhance the community’s advocacy efforts during the municipal election. Resources include: 

  • Easy to follow information and recommendations on six key issues for the municipal government to address – household food insecurity, affordable housing, safe and reliable transportation, support for living wage employers, an effective municipal food policy and fostering of food literacy. 
  • Questions for candidates on important issues pertaining to household food insecurity, food literacy, community food access and agriculture. 
  • Information about how individuals can vote and how organizations can help their clients or members vote.

The SCFC municipal election toolkit can be found by visiting www.scfoodcouncil.com/muelection2022. For more information, please contact foodcouncilcoordinator@gmail.com.

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