Farmlab Public Salon
Andrea Azuma and Elizabeth Medrano
Friday, Sept 28 @ Noon
Mapping Injustice, Agenda for Action
About the Salon
Attention to the obesity epidemic in the United States often focuses on individual eating behavior. However, it's not easy to find healthy and affordable foods in every neighborhood, including areas of Los Angeles. Project CAFE (Community Action on Food Environments) is a collaborative, community-based project that has mapped food access in 3 neighborhoods in Central and South Los Angeles.
Partners at the Center for Food & Justice, Blazer Learning Center, Esperanza Community Housing Corporation, the Healthy School Food Coalition, USC, and Childrens' Hospital Los Angeles are working together to identify these issues and implement solutions. In the 3 areas where we worked, we found that about 30% of all food establishments are fast food/to-go restaurants, about 22% are convenience/liquor/corner stores, and less than 2% are supermarkets.
These convenience/liquor/corner stores are missing many foods needed for a healthy diet and generally have higher prices than supermarkets. In this salon, we’ll share the process and results of this food assessment and discuss ways to engage residents, policymakers, and business owners in creating neighborhoods where everyone can access healthy, affordable foods.
About the Salon Presenters
Andrea Azuma has worked at the Urban & Environmental Policy Institute for 6 years and currently serves in multiple capacities. She is project manager for Project CAFE at the Center for Food & Justice, charged with overseeing project implementation with five partnering organizations in three LA neighborhoods to improve food access. As UEPI research
director she helps to plan and implement research and evaluation of various projects under UEPI's umbrella and serves on the institute's "core staff." Andrea has a bachelor's degree from Occidental College and a master's degree from Cornell University.
Elizabeth Medrano's active community involvement began in 1997, a few years after migrating from central México. Since, she has worked with low-income immigrants and other communities of color to address issues such as public transportation, the environment and the lack of health care through education and organizing efforts. As an organizer for the Center for Food and Justice, Elizabeth works with parents and other community allies to improve access to quality meals through the implementation of the recently approved Cafeteria Improvement Motion within the Los Angeles Unified School District. Elizabeth is the mother of a 7-year-old boy.
A familiar site for shoppers -- an abundance of chips on the shelves of local stores. Photo courtesy Center for Food & Justice