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PostPosted: Fri Oct 29, 2010 11:22 am 
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Joined: Mon Feb 07, 2005 6:39 pm
Posts: 2943
Location: Toronto
People have been writing, asking for a template letter to send to the prime minister. Here is KateC's excellent letter, with a few expanded points from Gwen.


Dear Prime Minister Harper,

Please keep your government’s promise to Canadian families on food labelling regulations.

Like 2 million other Canadians, our X-year-old daughter/son lives with life-threatening food allergies to x and y. Her/his diagnosis at x months old was overwhelming for our family.

It brought with it so many implications for our daily life. We had to quickly learn so much just to keep our beautiful baby girl [*Edit to your situation] alive and healthy. We had to learn about anaphylaxis, epinephrine auto-injectors and how to read food labels. It was a huge learning curve.

The medical issues were relatively easy to understand. Reading food labels at the grocery story was another matter. [*Insert sentence about personal grocery shopping issues. Following is Kate's] I can remember early on going into a grocery store shortly after the diagnosis and almost breaking down in tears thinking, “What can I feed my daughter?” Milk could be labelled using so many different terms. Eggs could also be labelled under a variety of names.

Then there were the issues of cross-contamination with allergenic foods in manufacturers' facilities and so-called "ingredients of ingredients". Which companies could we trust to report their ingredients accurately and truthfully? We felt like we had to take a leap of faith each time we served a meal to our daughter. Grocery shopping today continues to be a stressful and very difficult chore.

In X years since my child's [*or "my"] diagnosis, little has changed to help allergic consumers at the grocery store. The current food labelling guidelines are not enshrined in law and not stringent enough to mandate accurate and clear descriptions of food ingredients on pre-packaged foods.

As time is running out to pass the food labelling regulations announced by the former Health Minister in July 2008, we urgently seek your assurances that the proposed amendments will be approved as planned by the end of this year. Millions of Canadian families are counting on your leadership – because these changes could save lives – our daughter’s life. [or son's or my life or end after "save lives"]

Please pass the food labelling legislation.

Sincerely,

Please send your letter to the Prime Minister, the Health Minister, your MP and cc the Treasury Board President. Here is the contact info:

The Right Honourable Stephen Harper
Prime Minister
Office of the Prime Minister
80 Wellington Street
Ottawa, Ontario
K1A 0A2
Telephone: (613) 992-4211
Fax: (613) 941-6900
Email: pm@pm.gc.ca

The Honourable Leona Aglukkaq, P.C., M.P.
Health Canada
Brooke Claxton Building
Tunney's Pasture
Postal Locator: 0906C
Ottawa, Ontario, K1A 0K9
Telephone: (613) 992-2848
Fax: (613) 996-9764
Email: minister_ministre@hc-sc.gc.ca

For your local MP’s address:
http://bit.ly/9zujo9

Since Treasury Board is involved in this process so also cc Cabinet minister Stockwell Day:

The Honourable Stockwell Day
President of the Treasury Board of Canada and Minister for the Asia-Pacific Gateway
Treasury Board of Canada Secretariat
Strategic Communications and Ministerial Affairs
L'Esplanade Laurier, 9th Floor, East Tower
140 O'Connor Street
Ottawa, Canada K1A 0R5
Telephone: (613) 995-1702
Fax: (613) 995-1154
EMail: Day.S@parl.gc.ca

_________________
Allergic to soy, peanut, shellfish, penicillin


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PostPosted: Fri Oct 29, 2010 4:03 pm 
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Joined: Wed Aug 10, 2005 11:21 am
Posts: 684
Location: Cobourg, ON
Here is my dad's letter. I liked his subject line and his use of the conservative slogan, "Getting the Job Done" in his letter.

Subject: Food Labelling Legislation - A Promise to Be Kept

Dear Mr. Baird - As one of your constituents I am sending you a copy of a letter which my daughter and her husband sent recently to Prime Minister Harper. As a grandfather of a granddaughter who has life threatening food allergies I too am deeply concerned about the long delay in moving forward this vital legislation. I frequently hear Conservative Government members use the term "Getting the Job Done". I think you will agree that it is long overdue to "Get the Job Done" on this legislation. Because of the importance of this matter and the need for prompt action, I am forwarding this message to other members of cabinet and to members of other parties to encourage their assistance as cabinet moves this legislation into a high priority agenda very soon.

A concerned grandfather and your constituent

_________________
11 year old daughter -- lives with life-threatening allergies to milk, eggs and peanuts; seasonal allergies (birch, maple, ragweed); pet allergies; asthma; and eczema
9 year old son - no allergies


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PostPosted: Sat Oct 30, 2010 8:13 pm 
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Site Admin

Joined: Mon Feb 07, 2005 6:39 pm
Posts: 2943
Location: Toronto
Kate, That's excellent, too, and a great idea to involve grandparents.

They, too, often care for allergic children. They may struggle, even more than a parent, with obscure terms on label packages.

_________________
Allergic to soy, peanut, shellfish, penicillin


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PostPosted: Sun Oct 31, 2010 2:38 pm 
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Joined: Wed Aug 10, 2005 11:21 am
Posts: 684
Location: Cobourg, ON
Here is the letter that my brother sent. Please feel free to copy parts for other family members to use. My family is in full lobbying mode.

Dear Minister Aglukkaq,

Please keep your government's promise to Canadian families on food labelling regulations.

Like almost 2 million other Canadians, my 9 year old niece, M, lives with life-threatening food allergies to milk, eggs and peanuts. She was diagnosed with her allergies at 15 months of age. Her diagnosis was overwhelming for our entire family. We had to quickly learn so much just to keep our niece alive and healthy. We as a family had to learn about anaphylaxis, epipens and how to read food labels. It was a huge learning curve.

The medical issues were relatively easy to understand. Reading food labels at the grocery story was another matter. Milk could be labelled using so many different terms. Eggs could also be labelled under a variety of names. Then there were the issues of cross contamination and component ingredients. Which companies could we trust to report their ingredients accurately and truthfully? A simple thing like having an extended family dinner became a major stress. Ensuring that my niece was safe and included in the meal was, and remains, a challenge. Instead of looking forward to a family dinner, my wife and I often stressed about making a meal for my niece. A simple mistake with an ingredient could be deadly.

In the eight years since M's diagnosis, little has changed to help allergic consumers at the grocery store. The current food labelling policy is not stringent enough to ensure accurate and clear descriptions of food ingredients on pre-packaged foods. As time is running out on positive changes to food labelling regulations, we urgently seek your assurances that the last version of the proposed amendments will be approved as planned by the end of this year. Millions of Canadian families are counting on your leadership - because these changes could save lives - our niece's life.

Please pass the food labelling legislation.

_________________
11 year old daughter -- lives with life-threatening allergies to milk, eggs and peanuts; seasonal allergies (birch, maple, ragweed); pet allergies; asthma; and eczema
9 year old son - no allergies


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