This report was submitted by the Lorain County Food Forward group which is comprised of the local health department, food bank, and other non-profit organizations.
Type of submission
Barriers are political will, false perceptions of who actually needs this support, and funding.
There are opportunities for public-and private-sector partners to work together to achieve each pillar of the White House Conference. For example, the systems that combine work at local health departments, hospitals, non-profits, and businesses, or a grocery delivery program for patients with Type 2 diabetes in a specific community of high risk, with limited business/food establishment options. There are also barriers to achieving the actions including false perceptions of who actually needs support and funding.
Some residents share they aren't able and are used to having a regular supply of the fresh groceries they want or need. This makes it hard to plan and prepare healthful meals. Knowledge and time commitment to planning healthy meals are also barriers. Busy schedules are also a factor for working people. The younger children in families may need to put together their own meals with parents sleeping during the day due to work schedules, working during meal times, or other factors related to substance use. All of these barriers impact health, especially for people with diet-related health challenges. Local Health Department data shows that people and households with a low income also have a higher rate of diseases such as diabetes, heart disease, obesity, etc. People without time, knowledge, and resources to prepare foods struggle to manage diseases that require a special focus on diet.
Areas of divergence
We have listed specific actions that the U.S. Federal government, including the Executive Branch and Congress, take to achieve each pillar.
· 1. Improve food access and affordability: Require proper siting for grocery stores in communities via zoning codes or other city planning. People say they cannot access grocery stores within a reasonable distance by walking or bus route. Make SNAP/EBT an eligible payment option for grocery delivery and online ordering.
· 2. Integrate nutrition and health: Require healthcare systems to use community benefits dollars and other program capabilities to cover nutrition education and provide stipends for healthy diets. For example, produce and grocery prescriptions. Require labeling changes so the general public can easily understand how to read food labels. Require employers to make healthier packaged foods and label them as such, with affordable pricing.
4. Support physical activity for all: Health insurance should cover the cost of a gym membership or exercise program or equipment. Funding for communities to program fitness outdoors. Funding to improve community environments with paths, equipment, and safety measures that support outdoor activity.
5. Enhance nutrition and food security research: Increase individual knowledgebase about how people should eat and or plan and follow through on a plan for greater food security and healthy diets.
This original version was submitted on 2022-09-12 19:52.