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Woodstock anti-poverty advocates collect signatures to end poverty, food insecurity and homelessness in Canada

By Heather Rivers, Woodstock Sentinel-Review

United Church Women members marked International Day for the Eradication of Poverty by handing out Chew on This! lunch bags in downtown Woodstock. From left Darlene Nicholls, Judy Crane and Carrol Morrisson. (HEATHER RIVERS, Sentinel-Review)

United Church Women members marked International Day for the Eradication of Poverty by handing out Chew on This! lunch bags in downtown Woodstock. From left Darlene Nicholls, Judy Crane and Carrol Morrisson. (HEATHER RIVERS, Sentinel-Review)

Anti-poverty advocates from St. David’s Church took to the sidewalk in downtown Woodstock Monday to drum up support for a federal anti-poverty plan.

“Today is International Day for the Eradication of Poverty,” explained Carrol Morrison of the United Church Women. “We’re drawing attention to the fact that food insecurity affects the 860,000 people who use food banks in Canada.”

Volunteers handed out Chew on This! Campaign lunch bags containing an apple, a magnet and a postcard that says: “We need a plan to end poverty, food insecurity and homelessness in Canada.”

In the fifth year of the campaign, the signed cards will go directly to Jean-Yves Duclos, minister of families, children and social development, calling for a poverty reduction strategy to be included and fully-funded in the 2018 budget.

“Food banks were set up as a temporary measure in the 1980’s,” Morrison said. “But they are still in use today.”

Across the country advocates from food banks, meal programs, drop-ins and shelters have joined in the campaign.

Chew on This! is designed to raise public and political awareness about hunger, food insecurity and poverty in Canada and start a dialogue about how to eradicate poverty.

For more information visit www.dignityforall.ca.

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FOOD BANK FACTS

  • 863,492 Canadians use food banks every month.
  • Food bank usage is 28 per cent higher than it was in 2008.
  • One in three people helped by food banks are children.
  • One in eight households in Canada experience some level of good insecurity.