City of Regina
Saskatchewan CA

CC Notice of Motion
MN21-15

Food Security Motion

Information

Department:Office of the City ClerkSponsors:
Category:Not Applicable

Report Body

WHEREAS food insecurity as defined by the City refers to an inability or uncertainty that one will be able to obtain or consume an adequate quality diet or a sufficient quantity of food in socially acceptable ways;

 

WHEREAS it is widely acknowledged that food insecurity is a is a significant societal health problem that is associated with poor health, and is an obstacle to social, emotional and psychological well-being;

 

WHEREAS as cited by the Regina Food Bank in data collected between 2015 and 2018, the Regina region has seen the percentage of marginal, moderate, or severe food insecurity rise from 13.7% to 15.3%, which is slightly higher than the provincial rate. This insecurity is affected by Regina’s unemployment rate, reaching 7.3% in February 2021. Low household income, which can be created by unemployment, is the leading cause of food insecurity;

 

WHEREAS the COVID-19 pandemic has only amplified the challenges above and has resulted in ongoing disruptions to our food and commodity supply chains;

 

WHEREAS the effects of climate change have begun to destabilize the trusted weather patterns needed for crop production and resulted in drought and more violent storm systems in Regina and surrounding areas. These weather patterns are predicted to continue to intensify and it is imperative that we properly utilize our water resources;

 

WHEREAS as defined by the Permaculture Research Institute, permaculture is the conscious design and maintenance of agriculturally productive ecosystems which have the diversity, stability, and resilience of natural ecosystems;

 

WHEREAS the need to focus on food security has been identified through the Community Safety and Well-Being Plan;

 

WHEREAS residents who understand where food comes from and who actively participate in growing and supplying their own food can be empowered to increase their own food security for themselves and their families; and

 

WHEREAS residents in many Canadian cities, such as Edmonton, Calgary, Vancouver, Guelph and Kitchener already have successful bylaws permitting residents to keep a small number of hens;

 

THEREFORE BE IT RESOLVED that Administration be directed to report back to the Operations and Community Services Committee on the following:

 

1.     The adoption of permaculture principles for maintenance of existing park space, community garden expansion, and new initiatives;

 

2.     Opportunities to increase planting of edible vegetation and native plants and grasses in City parks and open spaces through the Parks Master Plan process;

 

3.     Opportunities to include fruit trees in parks and as part of the Tree Donation Program and Tree Day Program as outlined in report OCS21-34 State of the Urban Forest;

 

4.     Conduct jurisdictional research on opportunities to promote and expand the City’s community garden policy, including consideration of additional supports and incentives to use vacant properties, and report back on this research by Q2 of 2022.

 

5.     Conduct jurisdictional research to establish policies permitting the expansion of urban agriculture, specifically but not limited to bees and chickens by Q2 of 2022.

 

Respectfully submitted,

 

Shanon Zachidniak

Councillor – Ward 8