Feed Ontario Calls on the Province to Address Affordability and Employment Issues in Ontario
In response to today’s Throne Speech, Feed Ontario is calling on the Government of Ontario to make greater investments in the workforce, social safety net, and affordable housing
October 4th 2021 (Toronto, ON) – Feed Ontario had hoped that the Government of Ontario’s Throne Speech today would include clear and strong commitments to the organization’s recommendations for addressing food insecurity and poverty in Ontario. While the Speech recognized that the economic impact of the pandemic has not been equally felt across the province, and in particular highlighted the unique impact that it has had on young adults and hospitality workers, it fell short of outlining how the Province intends to address income security and affordability issues, which are two of the key drivers of food bank use in Ontario.
In the last year alone, Ontario’s food bank network served more than 537,000 people who accessed its services over 3.2 million times. This included a 26 percent increase in the number of first-time visitors, including families who have never accessed a food bank before. Further, it is anticipated that demand for food banks will continue to increase as we look towards the end of the year and into the New Year.
While Feed Ontario’s 132 direct member food bank and 1,100 affiliate organizational members across the province are working hard to meet the increasing demand for their services, this effort cannot replace a strong social safety net or essential investments that ensure every Ontarian has access to the income needed for today’s cost of living.
Feed Ontario urges the Government of Ontario to make a strong and explicit commitment to reduce poverty and food insecurity in the province by:
- Investing in Ontario’s Workforce by improving and protecting labour laws and developing quality employment opportunities that provide sufficient income for today’s cost of living
- Investing in Affordable Housing through the construction and repair of social and supportive housing and providing rent relief to low-income tenants facing eviction due to COVID-19
- Strengthening Ontario’s Social Safety Net by aligning social assistance rates and benefits with the cost of living and eliminating financial penalties on earned income
This week Feed Ontario will be releasing a new ‘Hunger in My Riding’ tool, which will provide visitors to the website with the ability to generate custom reports on poverty and housing affordability in their provincial electoral riding. Feed Ontario urges Ontarians to take action against hunger by speaking with their Member of Provincial Parliament (MPP) about hunger and poverty in their community and how it can be addressed.
To learn more about hunger in Ontario and Feed Ontario’s recommendations for change please visit: www.feedontario.ca
About Feed Ontario
From Securing fresh and healthy food sources, to driving change through policy research and innovative programming, Feed Ontario unites food banks, industry partners, and local communities in our work to end hunger and poverty.
Join us as we Feed Ontario and help build a healthier province. Every $1 raised provides 3 meals to an Ontarian in need.
For more information, please contact:
Communications and Marketing Officer
416-656-4100, ext 2941