People, we have a strategy
This might not hit the press, but Toronto's Board of Health just unanimously passed the Toronto Food Strategy proposed by the Medical Officer of Health. The report is titled, Cultivating Food Connections: Toward a Healthy and Sustainable Food System for Toronto, and can be found here in its last iteration: http://bit.ly/tofoodstrategy
The report's main recommendation according to the Dr. McKeown is to ask the city manager to embed food systems thinking in all departments, boards and commissions. This is a critical step that the City Manager was apparently happy to receive. It did not need to go to Council at this point, but in the future, some recommendations will require funding attached, and further structures for implementation will be decided by Council next year. Until then, Public Health will take the lead, with lots for staff to do.
Looking at the meat of the report, it held six recommendation areas with specific policies to support better food access in the City. Availability of food in neighbourhoods and the potential for projects leading to social cohesion were emphasized. Councillor Paula Fletcher talked about the amazing work done by the department on reaching out to communities in the publication of the report.
See a video shown during the meeting of what was done in Alexandra Park: http://bit.ly/torontofood
This is a major step.
However getting the molars into this nutritious plan is yet to come. As Councillor Davis stated, we need to work hard to keep this strategy alive through 2011.. it must be discussed in, and post-election.
Contact me to stay updated and learn what more we can do.
Congrats to the Toronto Food Policy Council, the Steering Committee and TPH Staff!
Feel free to start the discussion in commentsbelow..
p.s. my 100th blog post this one!
Labels: Toronto Food Strategy Public Health Board Council Municipal Election Sustainability Local Security Access