A talk about food poverty and its social construction as a matter for corporate food charity but not the state; why charitable food banking is part of the problem not the solution; and the critical role of the Right to Food in attracting the priority attention of governments for accountable public policy and food justice for all. Who is in charge? Where’s the political will?
Graham Riches is emeritus professor and former director of the School of Social Work, University of British Columbia (1998-2008). He grew up and was educated in the UK and was an early VSO volunteer in Sarawak (1960-61). After social policy studies at LSE (1965) , he worked in community development on public housing estates in London, later serving as director of Liverpool University Settlement. He has held teaching posts in Hong Kong, Australia and in Canada (Saskatchewan and BC) where he has lived since 1974.
His research and writing lies primarily in the field of poverty studies, human rights and social policy with a focus on issues of domestic hunger, food charity, social welfare and the right to food within Canada and the rich ‘first world’. Previous publications include Food Banks and the Welfare Crisis (1986) and First World Hunger: Food Security and Welfare Politics (ed., 1997). In 2005 he was a consultant in the preparation of the UN FAO’s Voluntary Guidelines on the Right to Food (2005).
Graham also joined the FRC for a Food Bites to give us a snapshot snapshot of what the current issues in the food system are and what civil society organisations and academics could be doing to work towards solutions.