Identify the specific issue/policy you wish to discuss.

The purpose of this assignment is to familiarize yourself with a current topic related to nutrition and write a letter to your local government representative or other comparable individual to address the issue. This issue can be anything relevant to the field of nutrition, including but not limited to: nutrition-related programs, nutrition-related health issues, food labeling laws, nutrition policies, nutrition-related bills that are currently being proposed, etc. Please note that the topic you choose must be an issue that is current, relevant, and realistic (i.e. writing to your local representative about banning McDonald’s because they sell unhealthy food is unlikely).

Instructions:

Select a topic and familiarize yourself with both sides surrounding the issue. You will need to use current and validated facts and statistics to support your position, therefore be sure to use valid and up-to-date sources. Some possible sources include:

The Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics website (www.eatright.org)

Center for Disease Control (www.cdc.gov)

UConn Rudd Center for Food Policy and Obesity (www.uconnruddcenter.org)

Nutrition.gov (https://www.nutrition.gov/nutrition-and-health-issues)

FDA (www.fda.gov), USDA (www.usda.gov), or US Dept. of Health & Human Services (www.hhs.gov) websites

National Institutes of Health (www.nih.gov)

Locate the contact information for the appropriate individual. For a federal issue, you would want to contact your US senator or representative. For a state issue, you would want to contact your state senator or representative. For a local issue, you would want to contact local government officials or other individuals in a position of oversight.

Format your letter. Letters are emailed rather than mailed these days, therefore your letter must be typed. Your letter needs to be dated and addressed to the appropriate individual using a heading (see sample letter on Blackboard).

Draft your letter. Formally greet the individual. Introduce yourself and explain why you are writing. Identify the specific issue/policy you wish to discuss. You must be specific as to your stance on the issue and the outcome you are hoping for. You will need to use facts to back up your stance. You do not need to generate a bibliography but it’s generally a good idea to state the source of your facts in the body of the letter (i.e. according to the CDC website…).

Your letter should be thorough but concise and must not exceed 1 page.

Don’t forget to end with a thank you. Lastly, you must sign the letter with your name and contact information (email or phone is fine).

Proofread your letter. There should be no spelling or grammatical errors and you must use only appropriate and professional language.

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