Senator Nancy Greene Raine
140 Wellington Street
Dear Senator Nancy Green Raine,
Dietitians are recognized as highly qualified leaders in food systems, they are educated in science, management, human development, and population health. As a dietitian, I feel that I am accountable for helping to progress positive changes in the Canadian food environment. I have a personal longstanding career goal of improving the overall health and intake of Canadians through advocacy, policy change, and lessening the (over) consumption of unhealthy foods due to knowledge gaps, obesogenic environments and the increasing exploitation of socially and economically vulnerable Canadians.
I believe that allowing food and beverage marketing to Canadian children is increasing the exploitation of developmentally, socially, and economically vulnerable individuals. Marketing to children continues to advance by utilizing psychology and age-specific vulnerabilities to present powerful messages meant to persuade children.
I want to congratulate you on recently tabling Bill S-228, The Child Health Protection Act to prohibit the marketing of foods and beverages to children under the age of 13. A strong consensus of Canadian and international health organizations has supported restricting marketing of food and beverages to children as a means to prevent childhood obesity and related chronic diseases.
Industry self-regulated approaches to restrict unhealthy food and beverage marketing have not worked. This bill will place the necessary regulations and accountabilities in place to effectively reduce our children’s exposure to food products known to contribute to Canada’s leading causes of death and disability.
I applaud you for responding to what Canadians want – public opinion polling shows high support for the recommendations outlined in your Bill. Interventions to prevent and reduce the burden of disease are particularly important in our most vulnerable- children. I offer my personal support for Bill S-228 and look forward to seeing it enacted into Canadian law.
Certified Diabetes Educator
On September 27, 2016, Senator Greene Raine proposed historical legislation that could make a lasting impact on the youth of her country when she committed to the suggestion that the Food and Drug Act (specifically the labelling, packaging and advertising sections) should be amended, moving to make it illegal to direct advertising and marketing toward children across the country.
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