Advocacy

UAH works with elected officials and policy makers to protect, strengthen, and improve federal nutrition program policies, in order to increase access to these programs and give voice to the people who use them.

At the Federal level we...

  • Meet with Utah’s Congressional delegation and their staff to educate them about the impact of hunger and food insecurity on their constituents.
  • Lobby Utah’s congressional delegation about the position and votes we would like them to take on budget and bill before Congress.
  • Educate Utah’s congressional delegation about the need to protect the funding and structure of federal nutrition programs.

Our Recent Successes

  • Persuaded (lobbied) Congressman Chris Stewart and Congresswoman Mia Love to co-sponsor the Military Hunger Prevention Act.

Currently we are...

  • Monitoring federal budget and funding for federal nutrition programs.

At the State level we...

  • Meet with state representatives and senators, and their staff, to advocate for policies and legislation that protect low-income Utahns.
  • Work in coalition with the Family Investment Coalition to address state level low-income issues.
  • Testify in state legislative committee hearings on low income issues.
  • Serve on councils and advisory committees including the Workforces Services Partner Coalition, Utah WIC Advisory council, Salt Lake Food Policy Task Force (founding member), the Utah Breakfast Expansion Team (founding member), and the state Local Food Advisory Council (appointed by the Governor).

Our Recent Successes

  • Helped efforts to oppose reinstating the sales tax on food;
  • Helped secure and protect $1.3 million in funding for emergency food pantries and food;
  • Worked with the ACLU of Utah and other community groups to pass Juvenile Justice reform;
  • Worked with Rep. Stephen Handy to pass a bill that created the Local Food Advisory Council and was appointed to the LFAC by Governor Herbert;
  • Worked with Rep. Angela Romero to modify drug testing requirements for the Family Employment Program (FEP).

Currently we are...

  • Eliminating the sales tax on food and increasing the minimum wage.

At the Administrative level we...

  • Facilitate a quarterly advocates meeting between program and eligibility staff at the Department of Workforce Services and other Utah advocacy & community organizations to discuss barriers to programs.
  • Advocate for federal waivers that limit barriers and help more people be eligible for federal nutrition programs.
  • Create Emergency Food Network/Qualified Emergency Food Agencies Fund report for the state.

Our Recent Successes

  • Worked with DWS in developing language that implemented the USDA guidance that allows homeless individuals to be exempt from work requirement;
  • In coalition with immigration rights advocates, DWS agreed to have more pro-active information encouraging families and individuals in the immigrant community to apply for public assistance and about how DWS protects identifying information of program applicants.

Currently we are...

  • Asking DWS to extend the recertification period for elderly and disabled households to three yearsIncreasing the cash grant for the Family Employment Program;
  • Developing a plan to examine emergency food pantry needs across the state in coordination with the Division of Housing and Community Development;
  • Reviewing state waiver options and policies for SNAP.