This Monday, the government signed an agreement with the representative of the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations (FAO) for Chile, Eve Crowley, to create the “School Food Law in Chile,” a public policy aimed at strengthening the food provided by Junaeb.
In detail, they will seek to initiate a participatory process for the development of the law, which aims to provide stability and strengthen the standards for the design of the law. Junaeb School Feeding Program (PAE)
During the event, the Minister of Education, Nicolás Cataldo, the national director of the National Board of School Aid and Scholarships (Junaeb), Camila Rubio, the executive secretary of Choose Living Healthy, Paula Rojas, the executive director of SLEP Barrancas, Patricio Canales, and the deputies Daniela Serrano (PC) and Mónica Arce (independent), with deputy Boris Barrera (PC)
According to Cataldo, the signing of the agreement “will allow us to look at the depth of our PAE to make sure that it is strong and that it meets nutritional needs to guarantee the right to education of girls, boys, and teenagers who can stay in the school system because of this program.”
“PAE is probably one of the largest state tenders, and the proper use of public resources is essential for our government,” he added.
In this regard, the national director of Junaeb, Camila Rubio, pointed out that “we have been part of many generations for 60 years, and now we are taking a big step to strengthen our history. We are one of the few countries that guarantees food from six months to university.”
“For this reason, our alliance with FAO aims to support us technically and legally so that our country has a School Feeding Law, a law that must be participatory, where different actors are listened to and taken care of for its implementation,” he added.
What is the School Feeding Law looking for?
According to the government, the agreement between the Executive and the UN is focused on a comprehensive objective: the implementation of a complete objective of diagnosis, control, and evaluation in PAE.
The law seeks to promote local purchasing and family farming, in addition to protecting the labor rights of more than 36,000 food handlers, which are part of the Junaeb program.
Therefore, it aims to institutionalize the School Feeding policy and provide stability and guidelines for the design of the program, which includes aspects such as management, organization, coverage, principles, nutritional requirements, suppliers, procurement processes, etc.
Work against school dropouts
For Junaeb, the law could mean optimizing program resources and expanding coverage to strengthen the permanence of vulnerable students in the school system by creating an environment that encourages academic performance.
The impact is also expected to result in a significant improvement in the operation, promotion, institutionalization, and control of PAE in Chile, which will facilitate the adoption of policies and the strengthening of the regulatory framework, taking into account the perspective of the agri-food system and a human rights-based approach.
According to the Executive, this orientation will serve as a basic guide so that the most vulnerable women, men, and adolescents in the country can fully enjoy the Human Right to Food during their educational process.