Body Liberation and Fat Acceptance

Body Liberation and Fat Acceptance

Foodshare’s statement on body liberation and fat acceptance

FoodShare is invested in body liberation and fat acceptance. That means we believe that all bodies are worthy and have the right to exist as they are. There is no wrong way to have a body.

Many people, particularly those that are fat, racialized, trans, queer, gender non-conforming or disabled, experience body policing. This means being told: who or what they are because of their bodies, what they can and cannot do with their bodies (including what and how much to eat) and how to feel about their bodies. These messages can come from many sources – media and popular culture, the health and wellness industry, government systems and policies, community food programming, family members, coworkers, teachers, health professionals, or even strangers in the grocery store. These messages lead to real harm – physical, emotional and psychological.

FoodShare is working towards a Toronto where everyone can feed themselves and their loved ones with dignity and joy. We believe that everyone has the right to food.

As a food justice organization that believes in body liberation and fat acceptance, we do not support fatphobia in any of its forms, including where it intersects with systems of oppression such as white supremacy, settler colonialism, colourism, ableism, ageism, misogyny, queerphobia, classism, etc. Because we know that access to food is shaped by these systems, as well as people’s current material conditions and their lived experiences, we respect people’s choices on the foods they eat. We are challenging the idea that foods are “good” or “bad,” or that people are good or bad for eating certain foods.

We are aligning and evaluating our work to ensure that we affirm all bodies. That looks like:

TAKE ACTION 

Let’s work together to advance body liberation and fat acceptance, in our organizations, our communities and ourselves. That can look like:

Organizations

Individuals

Join us for a panel event on September 23rd, 2021: Dismantling Fat Shaming and Weight Stigma in Health and Wellness Spaces, featuring Marquisele (Mikey) Mercedes, May Friedman and Issa Kixen, moderated by Fateha Hossein. Register here!


We recognize that there are many names for this type of work, including: fat activism, body sovereignty, and body neutrality, among others. Previously, we referred to this work as ‘body positivity’ (some of the materials shared here still refer to it as such), but we found this language was too limiting because of the ways body positivity is being co-opted by corporate interests, removed from its origins in radical fat acceptance led by fat, racialized and disabled folks, and fails to acknowledge that fatphobia is rooted in anti-Black racism.