As my son (who loves Dora the Explorer) would say, Lo hicimos! We did it! Hurray!
Last Thursday, January 17, 2013, the Board of Environmental Protection members called BPA “poison” and said they will proceed with our citizen-initiated rulemaking to ban BPA from infant formula AND baby food. (The lids of some baby food jars are lined with BPA). This rule will go to the Maine Legislature to be voted on. The earliest the ban will take effect is August 15th, 2013.
Thanks to everyone who signed our citizen rulemaking petition (over 800 Mainers), wrote letters to the editor, and attended BEP meetings. Gracias! Because of you, this proposal to ban BPA in infant food is on its way to becoming reality. As BEP Board member Mr. Dick Gould stated, “Once you get the women excited, it’s time to look out. I’ve been married 60 years and I learned that a long time ago. When they want something, they go out and get it, especially when it comes to their kids.” Go Moms! Chairman Mr. Robert Foley and others have also noted the huge public interest to ban BPA over the past year. Check out WCSH6 story Board Backs BPA Ban in Baby Food Packaging and additional press on our website.
The Board will take a final vote next week and then the proposed rule will go to the Maine Legislature. We still have work to do. BPA is found in many canned foods (in the lining of the can) and other food packaging. To protect children in the womb, we need to get BPA out of all food packaging, including canned foods. The BEP agrees, and they also expressed a desire to ultimately ban BPA from all food packaging, although Maine law currently doesn’t allow them to take that step. “This is not the end of it,” Gould said. “I think it’s time we do as much as we possibly can to stop poisoning our kids and poisoning our adults, and I do consider this to be poison.”
LDA of Maine will be working on the current loophole in Maine law that prevents us from banning toxic chemicals in food packaging marketed to children over three and adults. We will be asking our Legislature to close this loophole so we can finally protect all children (including children in the womb) from the toxic chemical BPA.
We still need your help.
1) Tell the Maine Legislature to close this loophole so we can get BPA out of all food packaging, including canned food.
2) Join us Tuesday January 29th at the State House (rsvp to this email or click the link to register).
Once again, LDA of Maine stood up for the health of all Maine families. In fact, we have been advocating for ten years for safer products by working to pass laws at the state and federal levels that will finally protect our health from toxic chemicals. We also know that you need to know NOW which products are safer for you and your family. That is why we continue to offer our Healthy Homes and Families Booklet and other resources on our website, post the latest critical updates to our Facebook page, and offer workshops on this important topic. Visit our BPA webpage to learn how to protect your family from this hormone-disrupting chemical.
This year, thanks to a Department of Agriculture grant, we are setting up state of the art technology to provide long-distance video and face-to-face trainings through 148 school departments and the University system. This new program will allow live, two-way sight and voice communication between presenters and their audiences and will provide significant savings to school districts and families in travel and training costs.
We are pleased to announce that the first face-to-face training sessions have begun. Therese Burns, Interim Director of Syntiro, is conducting the trainings. This month we are providing professional development trainings for educational technicians. Session 1 trainings will provide attendees with a better understanding of how students learn, tools to help students improve literacy skills, research based connections between Positive Behavioral Interventions and Supports, and Response to Intervention strategies that help students improve academically and socially, as well as an organizational toolkit to help students improve learning. Currently the training sessions are filled but the Augusta session will be videotaped and will be available on our general website after February 6th.
Session 2, I.E.P. 101, will be for parents and will help parents understand their child's disability, how to be a great coach, how to collaboratively work with your schools, and resources for parent support. Sessions will be in Bangor on February 26th, Augusta on February 28th, Presque Isle on March 5th, and Machias on March 7th. More details will be forth coming in the next week. The two follow-up virtual sessions will be held March 26th and April 25th.
We will keep you posted on Session 3 trainings which are geared for School Leadership teams and include information on reducing bullying and understanding all kids (with and without learning disabilities). They will take place in Augusta on March 12th, Bangor on March 13th, Machias on March 14th, and Presque Isle on March 19th. The two follow-up virtual sessions will be on April 3rd and May 21st. More details, materials, and tapings of the first face to face will be available on our webpage.
Find these e-newsletters helpful? Please share with your friends and like us on Facebook. A donation of any amount is also greatly appreciated. Just click the donate now button below and help us continue these trainings and fight for safe products, including BPA-free food.