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New Bipartisan Effort to Fix Nation’s Chemical Laws and Reduce Exposure to Toxic Chemicals

A statement by Breast Cancer Fund President and CEO Jeanne Rizzo

For Immediate Release: May 22, 2013
Contact: Margie Kelly, 541-222-9699, mkelly@breastcancerfund.org or Shannon Coughlin, 415-336-2246, scoughlin@breastcancerfund.org

The Breast Cancer Fund is pleased to see that both Democrats and Republicans in Congress agree that we need to reform the country’s woefully inadequate system of assuring chemicals are safe for use. We recognize the efforts of longtime chemical reform champion Senator Frank Lautenberg, and we look forward to closely reviewing the new legislation he crafted with Senator David Vitter.

The fact that chemical reform is finally getting bipartisan support is a testament to the power, passion, strength and commitment of people across the country who have been working to change the chemical regulatory system for years. It is the combined efforts of all of us working together that drove the chemical industry and its Congressional supporters to the table to negotiate a new bill for a new future: Mothers and fathers who want safer products for their children. Scientists who have created a new understanding of how chemicals work and affect our hormones and health. Workers and communities of color who have been on the front lines of chemical exposure. Advocates for healthy children and safe pregnancies.

For years, this movement we’re part of has worked to effect change in the marketplace, at state capitols and in Congress, and we have great faith that this growing movement will ensure that our hard work will result in smarter, health-protective policies.

Reform is urgently needed. Breast cancer kills 40,000 women in the United States every year. We know we can save lives if we reduce our exposure to cancer-causing chemicals, and that’s what a strong chemical reform bill will do.

The Breast Cancer Fund looks forward to closely reviewing the Chemical Safety Improvement Act to ensure that our top priorities are addressed, including provisions that will (1) ensure chemicals are safe before they end up in consumer products; (2) increase access to basic health and safety information on chemicals; and (3) protect vulnerable populations, including pregnant women and children.

The Breast Cancer Fund is committed to making this legislation as strong as it can be. And we’ll do so on behalf of the people who raised their voices, kept momentum growing around dining room tables and on Facebook and Twitter, and made sure retailers and businesses heard the message that we will no longer accept ingesting, inhaling and absorbing toxic chemicals into our bodies and homes as the price of living in the modern world. Our health is simply too precious to risk; chemicals should be safe for use or not used at all.

We urge members of Congress to come together to protect our children’s health from toxic chemicals, and improve the odds for the one in every eight women in America diagnosed with breast cancer in her lifetime. Together we can create a healthier world for future generations.

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The Breast Cancer Fund is the leading national organization working to prevent breast cancer by eliminating our exposure to toxic chemicals linked to the disease. www.breastcancerfund.org