July 28, 2017
Premier Ball Calls for Support in Advancing Food Security for Northern Communities Across Canada
During Council of the Federation sessions in Edmonton last week, the Honourable Dwight Ball, Premier of Newfoundland and Labrador, joined other provincial premiers in calling for increased accountability and transparency for the federal Nutrition North Canada program.
Nutrition North Canada is a Government of Canada subsidy program aimed at helping residents in isolated northern communities, access perishable nutritious food. The Government of Newfoundland and Labrador and several other jurisdictions across Canada have made a commitment to help northern residents address the challenges posed by remote geography, shipping costs, and low agricultural development, which create food cost burdens for vulnerable northern populations that struggle with food insecurity and health issues.
Premier Ball is calling on the Federal Government to take steps to ensure the Nutrition North Canada subsidy program is as effective as possible in reducing the cost of food for residents of isolated communities. The request is timely, as the Federal Government has recently taken steps to revise the program, which included holding hearings in Labrador regarding the program last fall.
The Provincial Government has undertaken its own measures to support greater food security and promote better health in northern communities, which are all in keeping with goals stated in The Way Forward: A Vision for Sustainability and Growth in Newfoundland and Labrador. This includes commitments to at least double provincial food self-sufficiency to 20 per cent by 2022 and increase agricultural activity throughout the province, as well as creating the Labrador Aboriginal Nutritional and Artistic Assistance Program in 2016 to support Indigenous communities.
"I was pleased to join with other premiers across Canada to pursue maximum benefit from the Nutrition North Canada program for the northern residents we serve. Through close collaboration between our provincial governments, northern communities, and our Federal Government, we can ensure comprehensive supports exist to make healthy foods available to people who need it, and healthier outcomes possible across Canada.”
Honourable Dwight Ball
Premier of Newfoundland and Labrador
“We are working hand in hand with the Federal Government to improve the Nutrition North program so that it represents the needs and best serves the interests of the residents in our northern communities.”
MHA for Torngat Mountains
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Council of the Federation: www.canadaspremiers.ca/en/
Provincial Government Announces New Labrador Aboriginal Nutritional and Artistic Assistance Program - www.gov.nl.ca/releases/2016/exec/0419n03.aspx
Information on the Labrador Aboriginal Nutritional and Artistic Assistance Program - www.gov.nl.ca/ola/grantsprograms-we-offer/labrador-aboriginal-nutritional-and-artistic-assistance-program/
Nutrition North Canada - www.nutritionnorthcanada.gc.ca/eng/1415385762263/1415385790537
Follow us on Twitter: @GovNL
Office of the Premier
2017 07 28 2:35 p.m.