Our Testimony on Ensuring Access to Healthy Food

Adriana Espinoza, our NYC Program Director, recently submitted testimony to the New York City Council’s Health and Finance Committees last week regarding our healthy foods budget priorities.  We called for a $10 million investment to expand grocery store access in underserved communities, a $15 million to increase healthy food SNAP incentive program, and a $3 million investment to increase healthy food options at corner stores.  These investments would advance sustainable agriculture and support our efforts to ensure that all New Yorkers have access to healthy food.

Similar to the New York State Healthy Food, Healthy Communities Fund, a $10 million investment for a healthy food financing initiative would expand access grocery stores. This investment would devote resources to areas that otherwise would not have access to quality produce to develop supermarkets and create jobs in these underserved communities.

A $15 million budget increase in SNAP incentive programs would give low-income New Yorkers the ability to access healthier food options and reduce food insecurity. The mission here is simple: if more communities have access to fresh fruits and vegetables, then our city’s public health will increase and our local food shed will be supported.

In addition to those programs, the presence of community-based organizations that promote and educate New Yorkers about healthy foods are also impactful. A $3 million investment in the Healthy Corner Store Initiative will allow these groups promote food literacy, nutrition, and encourage New Yorkers to shop healthy.

Ensuring access to healthy foods across communities will continue to improve the lives of all New Yorkers.