In the third and final part of this series on raising funds for mesothelioma, Medical Outreach Director Kaylen Jackson goes over talking points for either your letters or your in-person meetings with government officials. As Kaylen touched on last week, it is very important to get across to your local officials why exactly this is such an important and personal issue to you, and why you feel government funds should be increased for mesothelioma research. For more help with speaking points, or for a letter template, contact Kaylen.
“Hi I’m Kaylen and I’m the Medical Outreach Director for the Mesothelioma Center.
In last week’s video, I went over how to contact your elected officials to advocate for increased funding for mesothelioma research. Today I wanted to share some speaking points that you can use in your letters and during those meetings.
First and foremost, I think it’s important to speak from the heart, share your personal story, and how mesothelioma has uniquely affected you and your family. After that, here are some facts to help illustrate why this disease needs their attention:
Medical experts determine mesothelioma to be one of the most aggressive of all cancers. It’s caused by asbestos, a material still widely in use today.
Only 55 countries have actually banned asbestos use. Currently the US and Canada are the only two Western industrialized nations to still use asbestos materials. In 2010, 1100 tons of asbestos was shipped IN TO the US to be used in products that we see every day.
Of the 3000 individual diagnosed with mesothelioma each year, many of these are people who were exposed to asbestos during their time served in the US military. Others were exposed working in factories during a time that our nation was building its prosperity. We owe our freedom and our nation’s wealth to these individuals and their sacrifices.
More recently, those affected include firefighters and the first-responders of the attacks on 9/11. This is a disease that affects heroes, our nation’s most honorable and hardest working individuals.
In 2008, 2009 and 2010, mesothelioma was one of many diseases lumped in in a pot of allocated funding in the amount of $50 million dollars for research. In 2011 that pot was reduced to just $16 million dollars. Because of its direct link to military exposure, we’re asking that the Department of Defense allocate $5 million dollars as line item simply to be dedicated towards mesothelioma research. These are individuals who don’t only deserve our help, they’ve earned it.
Good luck on your meetings. If you need help on speaking points, just let us know. And thanks for watching.”
What topics would you like us to discuss in our next video? Let us know in the comments below or on Facebook.