Public Policy Advocacy

We advocate for equitable public policies that address the root causes of hunger, poverty, income inequality, and socioeconomic disparity.

The Last Line of Defense

We are the emergency hunger relief network, and we exist out of necessity because far too many Americans can’t afford adequate, nutritious food on their own. We are humbled to be called to do this work, and we take our responsibility as stewards of food and resources seriously.

But we also believe that every person, in an ideal world, should have the dignity of shopping for and purchasing the foods they and their family need and prefer. We believe that food is the most fundamental of all human rights, and that no one should have to prove their worth to get help when they can’t afford it on their own. That’s why we’re strong advocates for the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP), as well as other federal nutrition programs, like The Emergency Food Assistance Program (TEFAP), the Women, Infants, and Children (WIC) program, the National School Lunch Program, and the Summer Food Service Program.

As Ohio’s leading anti-hunger advocates, we inform, educate, and engage with elected officials and policymakers at the state and federal levels to protect and expand social safety net programs – because foodbanks should be the last line of defense. Follow us on Twitter or text FOODBANKS HELP to 52886 to receive our text alerts and stay connected with our work. You can view our current grassroots advocacy campaigns at our action center.

Free of Silos

Food insecurity is defined as “limited or uncertain access to adequate food.” It often forces individuals and households to seek out help with affording or accessing food. Many food insecure households engage in other coping mechanisms, like reducing the quality or quantity of dietary intake, and some experience hunger due to prolonged and involuntary lack of adequate food. Food insecurity and experiences with hunger lead to many short- and long-term consequences that can be devastating for children unable to grow and learn at the same rate as their food secure peers, working adults that suffer from increased challenges to their physical and mental health, and seniors that struggle to maintain healthy, independent lives.

But food insecurity does not happen in a silo. It is almost always driven by poverty, wage inequity, income disparity, and/or wealth gaps. And poverty, wage inequity, income disparity, and wealth gaps are the unfair consequences of unjust policies, systems and societal constructs.

We can’t prevent hunger without addressing these injustices – among them racism, sexism, and other forms of discrimination, regressive economic policies, worker exploitation, environmental injustice, and insufficient access to affordable housing and health care. That’s why we’re committed to exploring and tackling these interrelated issues as allies for a more just society.

Lend Your Voice

Strength in advocacy often relies on strength of voice. Sometimes, that means providing expert testimony, pitching news stories or opinion pieces to local media outlets, or hosting legislators in-person to witness our work to feed hungry Ohioans. But it also often means that we need a robust network of grassroots advocates to contact state and federal officials to support policies and programs that prevent hunger and poverty.

When you sign up to receive our advocacy alerts by email or by text, we will contact you when we most need your help to protect hungry Ohioans. We will always provide you with a suggested script and automated step-by-step process to make your advocacy as simple as possible. We know how busy you are and how many issues you care about!

If you have personal experiences with food insecurity and would be willing to consider sharing your story with a reporter or an elected official to help highlight why certain decisions are important to people like you, please submit your contact information and a brief summary of your story and a member of our team will contact you. Thank you for considering sharing your truth in this way.

Text FOODBANKS HELP to 52886 or visit our advocacy alert sign-up page to join our anti-hunger advocacy network today.