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ACR 16

URGING THE STATE DEPARTMENTS OF HEALTH SERVICES, FOOD & AGRICULTURE, EDUCATION AND THE CALIFORNIA SCHOOL FOOD SERVICES ASSOCIATION TO DEVELOP NUTRITIONALLY SOUND MENU PLANS THAT WILL INCLUDE AT LEAST ONE DAILY PLANT-BASED VEGETARIAN ENTREE AS PART OF THE FREE AND REDUCED PRICE SCHOOL LUNCH PROGRAM; AND TO INCLUDE INFORMATION ON VEGETARIAN/VEGAN DIETS IN NUTRITION INSTRUCTION.

1. WHEREAS, the American Academy of Pediatrics, the American Cancer Society, the American Dietetic Association, the American Diabetes Association, the American Heart Association, the USDA, and the National Institutes of Health recommend that there be greater emphasis in the American diet on fruits, vegetables, whole grains, and legumes with a reduction in consumption of animal foods; and

2. WHEREAS, recent studies indicate that more than one - quarter of California children are overweight or obese and therefore at higher risk of developing health problems, including heart disease, diabetes, asthma and cancer; and

3. WHEREAS, fruits, vegetables, whole grains, and legumes are generally lower in fat and calories than meat and dairy products, containing no cholesterol; promote good health because they contain fiber and essential nutrients, including vitamins and minerals; and they also contain phytochemicals and anti-oxidants that may provide additional protection to reduce the risk of some forms of cancer, heart disease, obesity, diabetes, high blood pressure, and other degenerative diseases; and

4. WHEREAS, a significant percentage of children who rely on free or reduced price school lunches are considered "at risk" for these diet related degenerative diseases; and

5. WHEREAS, diet related diseases take a disproportionate toll among minorities and racial minorities also have dramatically higher rates of lactose intolerance than their Caucasian peers; and

6. WHEREAS, a growing number of California school children either identify themselves as vegetarian or vegan, or come from vegetarian or vegan families, or come from families who avoid meat and dairy foods for religious and/or health reasons; and

7. WHEREAS, exposure of plant-centered entrees in the school cafeteria will positively influence children with poor eating habits; and

8. WHEREAS, these children are at a disadvantage if no plant-centered school lunch meals are offered daily in their respective schools; and

9. WHEREAS, the American Dietetic Association has stated that it is their position that appropriately planned vegetarian diets are healthful and nutritionally adequate and that scientific data suggest positive relationships between vegetarian diets and risk reduction for several chronic degenerative diseases and conditions, including obesity, coronary artery disease, hypertension, diabetes mellitus, and some types of cancer; and

10. WHEREAS, the Department of Health Services is striving to increase public awareness of the importance of eating five or more servings of fruits and vegetables a day with studies indicating the vast majority of children do not eat the RDA for these foods; and

11. WHEREAS, increased consumption of locally grown fruits and vegetables promotes a sustainable environment; and

12. WHEREAS, fruits, vegetables, whole grains and legumes are available through the USDA commodities program; and

13. WHEREAS, the USDA has made available a newer school lunch menu planning option called "Nutrient Standard Menu Planning," which does not require a meat or meat alternate component, and which is based on the recognition that most nutrients may be obtained from a variety of foods and allows for significantly greater flexibility in menu planning; and

14. WHEREAS, the USDA 1995 School Meals Initiative suggests that school lunch programs, in order to provide variety and encourage consumption and participation should, whenever possible offer a selection of menu items and foods from which children may make choices; now, therefore,

1. BE IT RESOLVED by the Assembly of the State of California, the Senate thereof concurring, that state agencies, including the Department of Health Services, Department of Food & Agriculture, Department of Education, and the California School Food Service Association are directed to develop nutritionally sound menu plans that will provide daily optional plant-centered vegetarian school lunches (prepared without meat or dairy products) in such a way that all students will be assured nutritionally balanced diets; regardless of their food preferences and avoidances; to be phased in over a period of approximately 4 years; and

2. BE IT FURTHER RESOLVED that the optional plant-centered entrees shall be developed with a similar standard for variety, cycle of repeat, and availability as meat and/or dairy options; and

3. BE IT FURTHER RESOLVED that nutrition educational materials and instruction shall strive to recognize, and include information about multi-cultural eating patterns including vegetarian/vegan eating patterns; and

4. BE IT FURTHER RESOLVED that the Director of the California School Food Service Association is request to report to the Legislature by January 1, 2008 on programs made to offer optional vegetarian school lunches; and

5. BE IT FURTHER RESOLVED that certified copies of this Concurrent Resolution be transmitted to the Director of Health Services, the Director of the Board of Food and Agriculture, the Director of the Board of Education, the Superintendent of Public Instruction, and the Director of the California School Food Service Association.

ACR16, the "Healthy School Lunch" resolution before CA Legislators, came up for a final vote on the California Senate floor today and was passed by a vote of 23-8. It now goes to the CA Secretary of State for official filing.

The final vote count for ACR 16 in the State Legislature was as follows.... The total is 66 ayes, 12 nos, 2 abstentions. The bill now proceeds to the California Senate. Please send letters of endorsement to your State Senators, and thank you letters to the Assemblypersons who voted favorable for this bill.

YES
Aghazarian (R) , Bates (R), Benoit (R), Berg (D), Bermudez (D), Calderon (D), Canciamilla (D), Chan (D), Chavez (D), Chu (D), Cohn (D), Corbett (D), Correa (D), Cox (R - Minority Leader), Daucher (R), Diaz (D), Dutra (D), Dutton (R), Dymally (D), Firebaugh (D), Frommer (D), Garcia (R) Goldberg (D), Hancock (D), Harman (R), Jerome Horton (D), Shirley Horton (R), Jackson (D) Kehoe (D), Koretz (D), La Suer (R), Laird (D), Leno (D), Levine (D), Lieber (D), Liu (D), Longville(D) Lowenthal (D), Maddox (R), Maldonado (R), Matthews (D), Montanez (D), Mullin (D), Nakanishi (R) Nakano (D), Nation (D), Negrete McLeod (D), Nunez (D), Oropeza (D), Pacheco (R), Parra (D) Pavley (D), Plescia (R), Reyes (D), Richman (R), Ridley-Thomas (D), Runner (R), Salinas (D) Simitian (D), Spitzer (R), Steinberg (D), Vargas (D), Wiggins (D), Wolk (D), Yee (D), Wesson (D)

NO
Bogh (R), Campbell (R), Cogdill (R), Haynes (R), Houston (R), La Malfa (R), Maze (R)
McCarthy (R), Mountjoy (R), Samuelian (R), Strickland (R), Wyland (R)

Abstaining
Keene (R), Leslie (R)

CALIFORNIA VEG SCHOOL LUNCH RESOLUTION
PASSES APPROPRIATIONS COMMITTEE

April 2, 2003
The Assembly Appropriations Committee met today and ACR 16 - Veg School lunch resolution was passed out on a vote of 22-1-2. That's 22 yesses, 1 no (Assemblyman Ray Haynes), and 2 abstentions (Assemblymen Maldonado and Samuellian - although they may have merely been absent or added on at the end). Assemblyman Nation presented the measure with representatives from the American Cancer Society, State PTA, and the Superintendent of Public Instruction's office there to speak in support -- very exciting!!

Attached is a list of current support. Again, if you notice an organization missing, please call them and have them fax us a copy of their letter. (916) 319-2106.

As far as our next step, we're off to the Assembly Floor! I'm assuming we could be there as early as next Monday (04/07), but really I'm banking on next Thursday (04/10). I'll e-mail you all when I know more specifics. In the meantime, keep those support letters coming to both us and all
Assemblypeople (as they will be voting next week).

Thanks!

Jackie Bowland, Senior Assistant
Assemblyman Joe Nation
State Capitol, Room 3013
Sacramento, CA 95814
(916) 319-2006
(916) 319-2106 FAX

Barbara Gates, Director
Lean and Green Kids
(310) 985-9517
www.leanandgreenkids.org

Assembly Concurrent Resolution 16 (Nation)
Updated Support List
As of 03/03/03

For a list of supporters and endorsers, click here.


For a recap of the chronology of ACR16, a draft of this resolution, a list of endorsers, and relevant news and organizational links, please go to the information page at http://www.soyhappy.org/schoolrez.htm or to the sponsoring organization, Project Healthy Beginnings, at http://www.projecthealthybeginnings.com.

Click here to review similar Hawaii resolution.