On November 8, Americans have important choices to make at the polls. And it’s not only a question of who will be the next President of the United States.
For many of us who value improving the food system in environmentally, socially, and economically sustainable ways, it may be hard to choose who our next President, Senator, Congresswoman or Congressman, Governor, or other elected official will be.Thankfully, we have resources to help us make these decisions. The Union of Concerned Scientists, Food Policy Action, and the HEAL Food Alliance have partnered on Plate of the Union to allow the united eaters to find out where candidates stand on policies that provide equal access to healthy, affordable food, provide fair treatment for farm workers, and keep our kids healthy.
Food Policy Action has a scorecard that shows how all members of Congress voted on key food policy legislation, including issues of domestic and international hunger, food safety, and sustainable farming.
It’s not enough for all of us to just vote with our forks—we can’t buy the food revolution. We need to vote with our votes and elect school council members, food policy council members, mayors, state legislators, and others who share our values in creating a food system that helps cultivate safe, healthy, nourished eaters—not for the next four years, but for generations to come.
In the words of Robert Egger, the President of LA Kitchen and a revolutionary doer, “It’s about politics, it’s about electing people who show up on day one, understanding that the local food system isn’t a joke, it’s a reality. But it’s going to take the power of a generation of mayors, Congresspeople, city council members, governors, and presidents. There should not be an election anywhere in this country in which a candidate doesn’t have a food policy and every single election should have a debate featuring food issues.”
Find out if you are registered to vote, how to register to vote, and where your local polling place is at your local election office. You can also learn about which issues are on your ballot at Rock the Vote.
(Danielle Nierenberg is President, Food Tank, foodtank.com)