Senator Risa Hontiveros has filed Senate Bill No. 2126, otherwise known as “Ensuring Zero Hunger for All Filipinos” to address the glaring gaps in the government response in addressing hunger and malnutrition.

“Itutulak ng Zero Hunger Bill ang gobyerno upang unahin ang problema sa gutom at ang karapatan ng bawat Pilipino sa pagkain lalo ngayong marami sa ating mga kababayan ay naitulak sa kahirapan,” Hontiveros said.

“Hindi ito dapat maantala o ipagpaliban dahil buhay ang nakataya.”

“The Philippines has committed to end hunger and eradicate poverty by 2030 as part of its Sustainable Development Goals. Kailangan itong maging pangunahing adhikain. Hindi ito dapat maantala o ipagpaliban dahil buhay ang nakataya,” the veteran legislator added.

The bill mandates the state to take appropriate steps to ensure the realization of individual’s right to food, design policies and fund programs that will create conditions that will free Filipinos from hunger and reexamine existing policies on the use, exploitation and management of resources to achieve the goal of ending hunger.

It will also provide for adequate, coherent and transparent policies that encourage and promote private citizen’s active participation such as through food banks and community pantries.

“Food banks and community pantries should be institutionalized so they can get the right amount of support from the government to serve and reach more people in need,” the seasoned lawmaker said.

Moreover, this measure fully integrates the whole of government approach to eradicate hunger. Government and all its instrumentalities would be compelled to work together across portfolio boundaries to achieve an integrated response to eliminate hunger.

Once passed, a Commission on the Right to Adequate Food will also be established as the primary policy-making and coordinating body to guarantee the full exercise of the right to adequate food.

A “National Food Policy” would be formulated by the Commission which will serve as a nationwide framework of programs that will address hunger, help achieve food security, improve nutrition and promote sustainable agriculture.

“Through the adoption of a National Food Policy, the government will be held more accountable as any violation of the right to food will be punishable by law,” the lady senator stressed.

“The real health disaster is still ahead of us.”

“The real health disaster is still ahead of us. It will not be enough to provide short-term solutions. There should be a long-term perspective to strike at the root of the problem to be able to provide a secure future and ensure the right to food for everyone,” she said.

“This proposed law will pave the way for inclusive, social, equal and sustainable growth and development to ensure that there is enough food available for all Filipinos,” Hontiveros concluded.


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