September 29th, 2015

Improving access to healthy food in northern communities

NDP to fix Nutrition North as part of new era of relations with indigenous communities

NDP Leader Tom Mulcair announced today his plan to overcome food insecurity in Canada’s isolated, northern communities so that northerners have physical and economic access to sufficient, safe, and nutritious food.

“Stephen Harper has used northern communities as convenient photo-ops for years while failing to address the most basic concerns of families – access to affordable food,” said Mulcair. “We will take a different approach so that remote Inuit communities in Nunavut and across the north don’t have to rely on cheap, unhealthy foods that also put their health at risk.

An NDP government intends to take immediate action and will:

  • Invest $32 million to fix and expand Nutrition North to include 50 isolated communities currently excluded from program subsidies by the Conservatives;
  • Conduct a review of Nutrition North in partnership with northerners to ensure fair access;
  • Support culturally appropriate and sustainable food security solutions;
  • Draw on expertise from existing successful models that increase the use of local foods, reduce food costs and create employment.

The legislative assemblies in Nunavut, Yukon, and the Northwest Territories have all called for action on Nutrition North. A 2014 report by the Auditor General, requested by the NDP, also revealed that Conservatives have no idea if the subsidy is working or benefitting those who need it. The Liberals won’t do any better.

“Justin Trudeau has already broken $1.7 billion in promises to Indigenous communities that he made just last month,” said Mulcair. “The NDP is offering a new era of nation-to-nation relations with Inuit, First Nations and Métis communities and we’ll turn the page on decades of Conservative and Liberal failures.”

The NDP believes in equality and fairness and is determined to improve the well-being of families living in isolated communities in Canada’s north. This is one of the many reasons more and more people are looking to Tom Mulcair and the NDP to bring positive change to Ottawa.