Your phone calls, letters, testimony, emails and social media shares worked. This year we’ve asked you to speak up for several policies that increase opportunities for healthy eating and active living in Kansas and Missouri. Let’s reflect on the successes we have had because of our unified voice.
Advocacy Win #1
In Kansas, Governor Sam Brownback signed SB 95 into law, paving the way for more hungry kids and families to access food assistance. Third party organizations, like Harvesters, are now able to accept electronic voice signatures on food assistance applications, like SNAP. This will streamline and speed-up the process for individuals seeking food assistance. Way to go, Kansas advocates!
Advocacy Win #2
Locally, Kansas City, Missouri residents flexed their advocacy muscles. On April 4, residents voted to invest in their city by voting yes to Questions 1, 2 and 3 of the G.O. Bond. G.O. Bond funding would improve access to grocery stores and other healthy food retailers by providing the following:
- Up to $450 million for street repairs including “complete streets” made for users of all abilities
- Up to $150 million for neighborhood sidewalks
- Changes to the city’s approach to homeowner responsibility for sidewalk repairs, helping low income residents
- Up to $35 million for ADA compliance of city streets and public buildings
The City Council passed a critical resolution to ensure G.O. Bond fund commitment to safe, livable neighborhoods. The effort of the City Council and the resolution will bring greater accountability to the city as it spends G.O. Bonds:
- Streets must be build for all modes of transportation, making them accessible and safe for pedestrians as they access grocery stores, parks, schools, and jobs
- A strategic, systematic approach to managing sidewalks must ensure the city will make the best use of limited funds
- A focus on equity will ensure that sidewalk investments reach those who have the greatest need
- A strategic mobility plan will ensure that all future decisions on transportation will be in the best interest of the community by focusing on health, safety, and equitable access
Thank you, KCMO advocates!
(Almost) Advocacy Win #3
In Missouri we came close! Throughout the legislative session, we advocated for the re-establishment of the Senior Farmers Market Nutrition Program. While this bill didn’t ultimately end up crossing the finish line, tremendous progress was made in both the House and Senate. Thank you advocates for your work on this legislation! Learn more about SFMNP here.
Advocacy works and there are always ways to get involved, speak your voice, and ADVOCATE! Kansas residents each have an opportunity NOW! The Kansas legislature is back in the statehouse to finish out the 2017 session and something they have yet to settle on is a tax and budget plan. KC Healthy Kids is once again leading the charge to reduce the state sales tax on food and this issue is sure to be discussed in upcoming debates. To learn more about the issue click here and be on the lookout for how when and how you can advocate.