Bylaws and Policies

Political Policy Food

Expiry: April 30, 2022

1 Facts

  1. Food security is when all people, at all times, have physical and economic access to sufficient, safe and nutritious food to meet their dietary needs and food preferences for an active and healthy life.
  2. Food security is essential to the financial, mental, and physical wellbeing of students, and as such may significantly impact their academic success[1].
  3. Food insecurity disproportionately affects post-secondary students, with 39% of students in Canada facing food insecurity compared to 12.5% of the population[2].
  4. International, Indigenous students, and students who parent face higher rates of food insecurity[3].
  5. There is a stigma surrounding food insecurity, which is often viewed as a normal rite of passage in university.
  6. Many students depend on food purchased at outlets on campus.
  7. Access to sufficient on campus options for students with specific dietary needs including, but not limited to, vegetarian, vegan, kosher, halal, culturally appropriate, and allergen-free food.
  8. The University has a strategic plan to provide a variety of food vendors, however access on campus to healthy and nutritious food on campus remains limited by both insufficient options and price.
  9. Access on University campuses to affordable on campus food options is limited.
  10. Nutritional information provided for food products on campus is currently limited.
  11. Access to food preparation facilities on campus is currently limited.
  12. Students living in Lister Centre, Peter Lougheed Hall, and Augustana residences must purchase mandatory meal plans, which allow unlimited access to residence cafeterias and limited access to certain outlets on campus.
  13. Some residences have limited food preparation facilities, however, they are typically insufficient for regular full meal preparation.
  14. Many students lack education and awareness of healthy eating and the options that are available on campus.
  15. Students have access to organizations including the Campus Food Bank that work to fight food insecurity.
  16. The production, distribution, and consumption of foods and beverages can have adverse social and environmental impacts.


2 Resolutions

  1. The Students’ Union shall advocate that food outlets serving an adequate variety of cultural, religious, and medical food needs be made available on campus.
  2. The Students’ Union shall consider affordability and cultural, religious, and medical factors when selecting food outlets in spaces controlled by the Students’ Union.
  3. The Students’ Union shall collaborate with partner organizations, such as the Campus Food Bank when possible to reduce food insecurity.
  4. The Students’ Union shall advocate for improved access to food preparation facilities on campus, such as water fountains and water bottle filling stations, community kitchens, and microwaves.
  5. The Students’ Union shall advocate that residence meal plans be affordable and offer nutritionally, culturally, religiously, and medically appropriate food to all students in residence.
  6. The Students’ Union shall advocate for education about healthy eating, and for nutritional information to be provided at campus food outlets.
  7. The Students’ Union shall advocate for environmentally and socially responsible food to be provided on campus, when available at affordable prices.

3 References

  1. https://www.ualberta.ca/agriculture-life-environment-sciences/alesnews/2016/august/too-hungry-to-study
  2. https://static1.squarespace.com/static/5941c85ae4fcb533d8d82767/t/5b7451d00ebbe8c1d7689085/1534349782055/Student+food+insecurity+advocacy+toolkit.pdf
  3. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/26280467