Welcome to Tyee’s reader poll.

Tyee Poll: Should Food Security Be a Government Responsibility?

Are we leaving systemic hunger to corporate charity?

Graham Riches, an emeritus professor and former director of the UBC School of Social Work, asks this big question in a recent Tyee piece on food banks. Riches researched the history of food banks for his upcoming book, Food Bank Nations — Poverty, Corporate Charity and the Right to Food.

In 1982, Canada took the food bank model from the U.S. Perhaps that was the wrong move, as it implies that hunger and poverty are the responsibility of charity and the private sector. Riches calls food banks a Band-Aid response to a broken social safety net – why not end the need for them instead?

Fast forward to B.C. in 2012 (that’s the most recent data we have for this question): half-a-million people in the province worried about, struggled, or were unable to feed themselves and their families. And that number doesn’t include homeless or on-reserve First Nations people.

We’re wondering what you think. Is turning to the private sector, groups such as food banks, an adequate response to hunger and poverty? Or do you agree with Riches?

* Please note that all poll answers will be publicly viewable, but anonymous.

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Please note that Tyee Barometer polls are only intended as a quick and engaging non-scientific snapshot of our readers' opinions on various topics that fit with The Tyee's very broad editorial mandate. They are not intended to be seen as a representative sampling of BC opinion.

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