GLANDORF — Glandorf resident Pam Niese recently returned from lobbying in Washington D.C. for cancer-related topics.
Niese left from the Dayton International Airport Sept. 8, arrived at the Ronald Reagan Airport and returned to Ohio Sept. 11.
“I went to educate our lawmakers regarding our cancer priorities,” Niese said. She went as a member of American Cancer Society Cancer Action Network. The group is the leading patient advocacy organization for American Cancer Society dedicated to passing evidence based laws that help fight cancer.
Niese has been a committee member for Putnam County Relay For Life since 2007. Niese’s sister, Lisa Berger, died at age 40 from cervical cancer and her cousins, aunts and father-in-law all had cancer.
“I’m really passionate about any way we can possibly impact to prevent cancer. Cancer from tobacco is one of the most preventable cancers we have,” Niese said.
She and 700 other organization members from around the United States and Puerto Rico met with legislator aides to discuss four cancer-related topics. Niese attended the conference with 17 ACS Cancer Action Network members from 16 congressional districts in Ohio.
A luminary ceremony was held at the Lincoln Memorial reflecting pool during the conference where thousands of luminary bags were sold representing those who are undergoing a battle with cancer or who have lost their lives. The state of Ohio sold 3,000 bags and Ohio was third in the nation for luminary sales. Niese sold 100 luminary bags.
The first priority was discussing cancer research funding.
“We want the lawmakers to increase the funding levels for cancer research that ensures continued progress in the fight against cancer for fiscal year 2020,” Niese said.
The second topic was quality of life for the Palliative Care and Hospice Education and Training Act. The organization wants final passage of the bill that is still in the house and senate gathering co sponsors and has not been up for a vote yet.
The act is to improve access to palliative care for people who have serious and chronic illnesses including cancer but not limited to cancer.
The third thing discussed was removing barriers to the Colo Rectal Act. For the Medicare population, if a person goes in for a colonoscopy and a polyp develops and removed the Medicare member will have an extra out of pocket expense that is not covered by Medicare. The act would ensure that the costs are covered by Medicare.
Other priories are the request to bring about a bill for the Safe Kids Act that stops appealing flavors for e-cigarettes for kids. The other bill the organization wants enforced is reversing the youth tobacco epidemic by stopping the flavors of all tobacco products and increasing the sale of tobacco products to age 21. It also calls for restricting all online sales of tobacco products including e-cigarettes and vapors.
U.S. Rep. Bob Latta and Senator Sherrod Brown support the Palliative Care and Hospice Education and Training Act and the removing barriers for the Colo Rectal Act.
Niese plans on attending the Strides Breast Cancer Walk Oct 12 at University of Northwest Ohio and will pass out petitions in support of a Breast Cancer Research Bill. The bill will increase research funding for breast cancer.
For more information on how to help lobby for cancer related legislation visit fightcancer.org or email Niese at firstname.lastname@example.org
Reach Jennifer Peryam at 567-242-0362.