This May, a coalition of community members, youth, and local organizations from across California gathered for the eleventh annual ENACT Day in Sacramento to share with legislators why prevention matters for their communities, and to voice support for four key bills promoting prevention in the areas of nutrition, physical activity, and safety.
ENACT Day is an outgrowth of Strategic Alliance – California’s statewide network for healthy food and physical activity environments – and is sponsored by Prevention Institute and its statewide partners. With every ENACT Day, California residents – some of whom have never visited our State Capitol – can engage in the democratic process. Through education on prevention legislation, policy advocacy skills building, and meetings with legislators and/or their staff, ENACT Day ensures California’s community leaders can effectively voice their hopes and concerns about critical health and safety issues to their representatives. Over the years ENACTers have supported the passage of key bills that have helped stem the upsurge in diet- and inactivity-related illness in California.
This year, ENACT Day participants advocated for four key prevention bills. These bills promoted curbing consumption of sugary drinks, supporting safer school zones for students who walk and bike to school, stretching the dollars of people living in poverty when they use nutrition benefits at farmers markets, and ensuring that no students start the school day hungry. As of June 24, the nutrition benefits and safer school zones bills were still moving forward.
More than 120 health advocates, representing 41 communities from across the state, including the Far North, Central Valley, and Central Coast regions, traveled to Sacramento to participate. Together, we walked the halls of the Capitol, making 43 visits to legislators and legislative staffers. Our in-person event and online campaign, Virtual ENACT Day
, generated more than 450 letters in support of the four ENACT Day bills.
One of the highlights of the day was a keynote address by Assemblymember Phil Ting (D-San Francisco), who reinforced the power of community advocates across California sharing their stories with legislators: "When we get people coming and talking to us, it makes a huge impact," he said.
Read more about ENACT Day at our blog