Discussion on Living Income Guaranteed

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LIG and Food Distribution

Carrie Tooley

Where I live we have a program where Food Stamps are given to individuals that cannot afford to buy food. The types and kinds of foods that one can purchase with Food Stamps is limited and does not make sense to many. For instance, a person can go into a store and buy candy, soda, processed foods and other items that are considered 'junk' or 'convenience' foods and yet, another person can go into the store, attempt to buy a whole cooked rotisserie chicken and not be allowed to use their Food Stamps to pay for the purchase because the item is 'pre-cooked'.

I see that this is creating a lot of conflict with the people here because the Food Stamp program is being funded by income taxes and those that pay-in taxes to fund this would like to see the people that receive these benefits eating in a way that can best support their health - also, these same taxpayers are funding Medicare/Medicaid via income taxes for the same group of people who cannot afford healthcare either.

In the Equal Life Foundation's video about Fundamental Human Rights, it makes it clear that food is a right and must be provided equally for all. Will there be any limitations regarding the types of food that people can eat or will it be up to the individual to take make their own best choices? Will people be educated about the potential health risks of certain foods? And a semi-unrelated question: Will LIG work on integrating Life Skills (preparing food, taking care of oneself, etc.) back into the public education system?

Anna Brix Thomsen

That is an interesting question Carrie! My perspective would be that eventually food will be produced with integrity in such a way that foods in general won't be harmful for neither the individual nor the environment. And a part of that would also include transparent labellings on food items so that one can see the exact compounds of the product as well as the production and transportation processes involved in making the product. And here also it would be relevant to provide people - from childhood - with effective education on nutrition.

As such it actually wouldn't be necessary to restrict or limit what people could buy, because we would make sure that food items aren't compromised through profit-motives and we would make sure that people have the necessary understanding of their own body and it's interconnected relationship with nutrition to be able to make educated and self-supportive decisions about what to eat.