Community Leaders focus on Barriers to Food Access 

Valerie Tarasuk, Leslie Campbell, Leticia Deawuo, and Bonnie McElhinny


An engaged group of alumni and friends joined us on February 4th for the first installment of the 2020 New College Alumni Lecture series. We were very excited to have three experts and community leaders join us for a frank and thoughtful discussion on food insecurity in Canada, and particularly its impact on Black Canadians.  


Leslie Campbell answers a question from the audience


Valerie Tarasuk gave a snapshot of the in-depth statistical research being done by PROOF into the causes and effects of government policy on food insecurity rates; FoodShare’s Leslie Campell’s discussed the intersections of race and food insecurity; and Leticia Deawuo, Director of Black Creek Community Farm, social activist, and Jane-Finch community resident, spoke about race and food insecurity at a localized level through the work being done in her community.


After the lecture, attendees engaged in a Q&A session on food insecurity


The lecture was followed by a lively Q&A session which saw the audience and the speakers touch on wide ranging food insecurity issues. The discussion covered, among other things,  the need for increased advocacy and education on the economic problems which are at the root of food insecurity; the need to reframe the narrative around how we talk about food and food access; and the barriers to better food access caused by systematic racism.  


We hope all who joined us left with a deeper understanding of the issues facing our city and our country through this discussion. To see more images from the event, please check out our Facebook album.


The next installment of our New College Alumni Speaker Series will be Science vs Art: Wine Production in the 21st Century on March 19.