News Update: February 12th 2015

Hunger Action LA Meeting Feb 27: Updates on SSI Campaign, Food Waste, Upcoming Hunger Action Day

The next Hunger Action LA meeting will be:
Friday Feb. 27
10 am to 12 noon
Location: CHIRLA, 2533 West 3rd St., Los Angeles, CA 90057

*Look for signs at building for room location
3rd st. Between Rampart and Alvarado.
Free parking in back of building. Turn on Carondolet St. to get to back of bldg.

We’re pleased to have our special guests from LA Food Policy Council Esther Park and Anisha Hingorani who will update us on campaigns in the city around Food Waste policies and also the Healthy Neighborhood Market Network program, funded partly by city dollars. In addition, we will have updates on the CA4SSI campaign, the Market Match legislation (California Nutrition Incentives Act), the Right to Rest act, and overall preparations for Hunger Action Day. Please rsvp to frank@hungeractionla.org

From our friends at LA Food Policy Council, on food waste: “Due to increased interest in food waste recycling, recovery and composting in the community, as well as the current policies underway to support organics recycling in the City of LA, the LA Food Policy Council is convening a Working Group focused on food waste, which will be affiliated with the Don't Waste LA Coalition led by LAANE. We will discuss opportunities to work with Sanitation, haulers, and forward-thinking food retailers on opportunities to divert food from landfills and support a thriving organics recycling sector. Additionally, we hope to bridge the conversation between food recovery, emergency food assistance and food waste and identify partnerships and strategies to address these issues.”

Californians For SSI (CA4SSI) Campaign Moving Into Critical Phase: Please Sign Petition

Over 1,100 people have signed the CA4SSI (Californians for SSI) petition calling for SSI/SSP benefits for seniors and people with disabilities to be raised above the poverty line. But we need YOU to sign on to make it powerful! http://bit.ly/CA4SSIPetition

Join the statewide campaign to lift 1.5 million California seniors and persons with disabilities out of poverty by raising the SSI/SSP monthly benefits above the poverty line. (SSI is Supplemental Security Income, a federal payment, and SSP is the State Supplemental Payment, an additional portion provided by California.)

First Step: Sign the petition . Our statewide petition is being hosted by St. Anthony Foundation in San Francisco. Just go to the link below and enter your information.
http://bit.ly/CA4SSIPetition

If you represent an organization: Organizations have a separate sign-on letter to the campaign at Organizational Sign On Letter

Second Step: Forward the link to everyone you know.

Third Step: If you would like to become involved more deeply in the campaign, contact frank@hungeractionla.org.

Fourth Step: After you sign the petition, we’ll be gearing up to send letters to the Assembly Budget Committee and the Senate Budget Committee. Those are the elected officials who decide if we can spend the money to give a dignified life to the 1.5 million California seniors and persons with disabilities who right now struggle with basic necessities. The budget hearings will be held during March

Peoples Guide 2015 Available Now!

pplsguide.gif

The long awaited new edition of the Peoples Guide to Welfare Health and Other Services 2015 is available now in English! Spanish is anticipated to be available April 15.

Published since the late 1970s, the Peoples Guide has become the standard guidebook of public social services for people working in the field, people in need of help, and those just helping their neighbors.

This 72 page newsprint booklet gives you all you need to know about applying for :

  1. Financial assistance for individuals and families
  2. Unemployment benefits
  3. Job training
  4. Help for people in re-entry
  5. Dept. of Rehabilitation
  6. Child Care
  7. Foster Care
  8. Tax Rebates
  9. Social Security and SSI
  10. CalFresh
  11. Child Nutrition and WIC
  12. Help with Car Insurance and Smog Check Costs
  13. Low Cost Phone Service and Utility Bill Assistance
  14. Housing (including assistance for Transitional Foster Youth)
  15. Phone Numbers for Legal Assistance

The Peoples Guide 2015 electronic book is also available. Please follow the link below.
Peoples Guide English 2015 E Book
E Book features Live Links! Click directly on the links in the book to go to the live webpages.
*Flash Player is required to play properly. find it here: get.adobe.com/flashplayer/

Ordering Printed Edition:

The basic charge Is $1.25 a copy. Individual orders of up to 2 books are free for low income people. Call (213) 388-8228 or use orders@hungeractionla.org

Online Orders:The Peoples Guides to Welfare Health and Other Services can be ordered online using our order form:


Peoples Guide Order Form

For Bulk Orders Contact:orders@hungeractionla.org
Include your name, address, quantity of English and Spanish copies that you want.

We ask that agencies purchase copies so we can pay for publication, translation, and mailing costs of the guide. In addition, funds generated support the Market Match program. Discounts of various types are available for large orders. Contact orders@hungeractionla.org

Save the Date: May 12-13 Hunger Action Day

May 12-13 are Hunger Action Days in Sacramento (May 12 is a travel day from L.A. to the Capitol, and the actual events are at the Capitol on May 13.)

Each May hundreds of anti-hunger advocates from across the state meet in Sacramento to educate their legislators about hunger and encourage their sup-port for anti-hunger legislation. This year advocates from your community will be at the capitol on Wednesday, May 13, 2015. With more than 3.8 million California adults struggling with food insecurity it’s important we speak out

Groups organize each year for Hunger Action Day, and they meet in Sacramento coming from San Diego, L.A., the Central Valley, Santa Cruz and Central Coast area, the Bay Area, Sacramento and Northern California.

L.A. advocates either fly up on their own to Sacramento and meet the main group there, or join the 80 + people who have traveled together on the bus, leaving the day before (May 12.)

LOS ANGELES HUNGER ACTION DAY INFORMATION:

  • Space is limited so reserve now : 213.388.8228 or frank@hungeractionla.org
  • Leaving on bus 9 am from LA on Tuesday May 12 (RSVP first)
  • Departure point will be announce in a separate email, likely departing from Downtown LA.
  • Staying overnight in Sacramento at Quality Inn : main events are on Wed May 13. It will be hot and windy so dress accordingly.
  • Snacks provided in morning and we are planning dinner together with the San Diego group for May 12. Lunch provided on Hunger Action Day (May 13).
  • Events on the day include rallies, speakers from the state legislature discussing this year’s budget and policy decisions impacting hunger, and visits to legislators inside the state Capitol.
  • Don’t worry if you have never visited a legislator before: if you haven’t, then this trip is definitely for you! Save the date for a training on this year’s issues and general information on how to construct a useful legislative visit (Friday April 24).
  • Leaving Sacramento 2:30 pm Wednesday May 13 after the day’s visits are finished.
  • Arrive back in LA approx 9 pm Wed May 13
  • $40 donation requested, no one turned away
  • Groups welcome from community organizations in LA, East LA, South LA, Valley, Westside, Pasadena/Glendale, San Gabriel Valley, Long Beach, Antelope Valley, and anywhere else!
  • You can also make your own travel arrangements & meet us in Sacramento: still RSVP please

Questions? Contact:
Michelle Udeorji (Southern California)
michelle@hungeractionla.org

Support Neighborhood Food Network

The Healthy Neighborhood Market Network program needs your support! It’s funded in part by CDBG dollars, which are a part of the City of LA's HCID "Consolidated Plan". Letters / comments are requested to hcidla.planning@lacity.org by Friday, Feb. 27. There’ll be some discussion of it at the Hunger Action LA meeting that same day, but please try to get your letter in before then.

About the Con Plan:
The Mayor recently released the draft "Consolidated Plan," which determines how federal HUD funding will be spent in LA in the next program year (April 2015 - March 2016). Most of the funding goes to physical developments like affordable housing and social / community services. A small percentage of the budget is set aside for economic development, under a category called the Community Development Block Grant (CDBG).

What does this have to do with healthy food access?
The Healthy Neighborhood Market Network program (HNMNP) is listed in the budget for CDBG dollars. We're the smallest line item in our category, and the $250,000 they've proposed for us will be a huge boost for the program, which organizes low to moderate income corner store owners in food desert communities to become successful healthy food retailers.

What can we do?
Please have your coalition or organization or community group send a comment letter showing your support for the Healthy Neighborhood Market Network program to hcidla.planning@lacity.org and the City Council Housing Committee by 2/27.

Once the comment period ends on 2/27, the City Council's Housing Committee will take a look at this draft Con Plan and make cuts. Your comment letters will let the committee Chair (Gil Cedillo), Vice Chair (Felipe Fuentes) and member (Curren Price) know that the HNMNP has community support and must stay in the budget. All comments will be forwarded to the City Council and Mayor.

You can use this letter as a sample:
Sample Letter To Support Neighborhood Food Network

This letter should be directed to: hcidla.planning@lacity.org councilmember.cedillo@lacity.org councilmember.fuentes@lacity.org councilmember.price@lacity.org
Or to be included in the LAFPC comment letter, please email/call Esther at epark@goodfoodla.org / 213-473-9739
Click Here To See The "Con" Plan

Ask FTC to Investigate Monster Cereal Merger

From our friends at Food and Water Watch:

“A coalition of consumer, community, farm, faith, food and hunger organizations are respectfully requesting that the U.S. Federal Trade Commission (FTC) fully investigate the proposed merger between Post Holdings, Inc. and MOM Brands. Breakfast cereal is an everyday staple for hundreds of millions of consumers. Families with children are especially reliant on breakfast cereal to get their families going every morning.”

“The breakfast cereal industry is widely considered one of the least competitive places in the grocery store. The industry is already highly concentrated, with the top four firms selling 80 percent of the ready-to-eat breakfast cereal in 2014.”

The merger would be a monster indeed, with the gigantic Post eating up MOM brands, which provides low cost “knock off” brands that are the salvation of low income consumers’ wallets. With MOM out of the way as alternative competition, Post will have an even bigger share of the super concentrated industry…and that means that they’ll adjust their prices upward.

See the letter here, and sign your organization on if you are able:
Investigate the Post-MOM Cereal Merger

The majority of families who have seen little improvement in their household incomes over the past decade lack the economic resources to avoid the likely cereal price increases that would result from this merger.

211 Celebrates 10th Anniversary!

Appropriately on 2/11/15, 211 celebrated their 10th anniversary. What can you say about 211 except that they have made incredible strides in becoming a premier resource agency, referring thousands of people annually to connections for food, shelter, utility bill assistance, health care, and many other services? Of late, they also are able to provide autism screenings and an expanded host of resources for veterans. They handle half a million calls annually, 24/7, in 140 languages.

211 is not a government agency though---an astonishing fact! So feel free to give them a donation to help their great work.

You can donate to 211 here:
Give to 211

Right To Rest Act: Email Legislators Now!

The struggle for the right of homeless people NOT to be arrested for simply being homeless continues! The Homeless Bill of Rights has been subdivided into issue areas: the Right to Rest Act would simply affirm the right to rest, eat, and pray in public areas when there’s no alternative available, free from citation. Arrests of homeless people usually turn into warrants, and subsequently jail, for non-violent offenses. While the real solution is housing, we shouldn’t tolerate jail being used as a place to warehouse those who have become the poorest of the poor.

The broad coalition working on the Right to Rest Act is seeking a legislator to author this bill so we can begin the path to recognizing human rights in our very own country---if we don’t start with the “least of these”, we could be on a slippery slope. ( We may already be: only a few days ago the governor of Kansas issued an executive order allowing discrimination against gay and lesbian members of the workforce.)

The right to share food, at the least, is a fundamental human right that shouldn’t be abridged, ever, regardless of if that sharing takes place in public.

Please take a minute to send an email to the following legislators: Senator Holly Mitchell and Assemblymember Miguel Santiago. We believe one of them will come through and author this important bill. But we need you to help with your message.

Sample letters follow:

Sample Letter Senator Mitchell

Please email Senator.Mitchell@senate.ca.gov and Cc Elise.Gyore@sen.ca.gov and Erica@cangress.org .



Dear Senator Mitchell,



We are part of a coalition of more than 130 organizations in California who have endorsed principles for a statewide homeless bill of rights, all working together to ensure that the human and civil rights of all people are protected and respected locally as, nationally and throughout each state, we try to address the record number of people who are homelessness, without a private place to rest.

We appreciate your recent consideration of our proposed Right to Rest Act, and your submission of the bill to the legislative counsel. However, we are disappointed that you decided not to author the bill this year. We know you must make difficult decisions about legislation to move forward each year, and your leadership is key in ensuring new laws that promote equity and social justice. We urge you to prioritize ending and preventing the criminalization of homelessness at every opportunity, as it is one of the most pressing civil rights issues in your District and across the State.

We understand that you support the bill in concept, and we know you are working hard to end criminalization overall. We’d like you to reconsider authoring a Right to Rest Act this year or, if you absolutely cannot, please help us to find an author and support the passage of the bill in other ways. To discuss means of supporting our goals further, please contact Eric Ares, the coordinator of the Southern California Homeless Bill of Rights coalition, at Erica@cangress.org or (213) 228-0024.



Sample Letter Assemblymember Santiago

Please email Miguel.Santiago@asm.ca.gov and Cc Jackie.Koenig@asm.ca.gov and Erica@cangress.org



Dear Assemblymember Santiago,



We are part of a coalition of more than 130 organizations in California who have endorsed principles for a statewide homeless bill of rights, all working together to ensure that the human and civil rights of all people are protected and respected locally as, nationally and throughout each state, we try to address the record number of people who are homelessness, without a private place to rest.

We appreciate your recent consideration of our proposed Right to Rest Act. However, we are disappointed that you decided not to author the bill this year. We know you must make difficult decisions about legislation to move forward each year. We urge you to prioritize ending and preventing the criminalization of homelessness at every opportunity, as it is one of the most pressing civil rights issues in your District and across the State. We are particularly asking for your support as the representative of the Skid Row community, where LAPD’s Safer Cities Initiative has resulted in mass arrests and citations for more than 8 years while minimal housing resources have been added to the community.

We’d like you to reconsider authoring a Right to Rest Act this year or, if you absolutely cannot, please help us to find an author and support the passage of the bill in other ways. To discuss means of supporting our goals further, please contact Eric Ares, the coordinator of the Southern California Homeless Bill of Rights coalition, at Erica@cangress.org or (213) 228-0024.


Be the first to comment

Please check your e-mail for a link to activate your account.

Top of Page