Everyone has a role to play in preventing childhood obesity, including local elected officials who serve as leaders in adopting policies or making environmental changes so children in their communities reach their full potential and live healthy lives.
As a part of Let’s Move! Cities, Towns and Counties (LMCTC), communities can earn bronze, silver and gold medals in each of the initiative’s five goals, which are aimed at helping young people eat healthy and be physically active. Since July 2012, the National League of Cities has awarded 1,274 medals to participating local elected officials.
Last week, nearly 400 mayors, city councilmembers, and other local elected officials were honored for their participation in Let’s Move! Cities, Towns and Counties at a celebratory event at NLC’s Congress of Cities in Seattle, Wash.
Eighteen communities and the local elected officials leading the efforts in these communities, who have made the most progress in completing the five LMCTC goals, were also honored during the event:
- Sites with populations with less than 25,000: Hawaiian Gardens, Calif.; Kenmore, Wash.; and Selma, Ala.
- Sites with populations between 25,000 and 49,999: Annapolis, Md. and Casa Grande, Ariz.
- Sites with populations between 50,000 and 99,999: Davenport, Iowa; Jackson, Tenn.; Meriden, Conn.; Revere, Mass.; and Somerville, Mass.
- Sites with populations between 100,000 and 249,999: Beaumont, Texas; Columbia, S.C.; Knoxville, Tenn.; Norfolk, Va.; Orlando, Fla.; and Rancho Cucamonga, Calf.
- Sites with populations more than 250,000: Columbus, Ohio and Knox County, Tenn.
The first city to earn five gold medals, Beaumont, Texas, was also honored. Through the leadership of Councilman Alan Coleman and city staff, Beaumont was recognized for their achievements, including hosting a multi-purpose training session where local childcare providers learned and discussed nutrition standards with a dietician.
During the event, Let’s Move! Executive Director Sam Kass commended the city leaders receiving awards and challenged them to take additional actions to improve the health of their communities. A panel comprised of Councilman Coleman; Columbia, S.C. Councilwoman Tameika Isaac Devine; and Selma, Ala. Mayor George Evans also provided city leaders in the audience with examples of what is working in their cities to address childhood obesity.
For more information about the LMCTC initiative, its accomplishments, and how local elected officials can sign up, visit: www.HealthyCommunitiesHealthyFuture.org