November 23, 2012

Legislators urged to support anti-BPA bill

Letter to the Editor

As a parent and retired health professional who has worked with children with learning disabilities, I want make sure that one very important issue does not get forgotten in the wake of this election: the need to protect our children from toxic chemicals such as bisphenol A (BPA) in everyday products.

BPA is found in the linings of cans and jars and leaches into our food at hormone-disrupting levels. It is linked to breast and prostate cancer, reproductive problems and early puberty in girls.

My sister and I both are survivors of a hormone-driven cancer.

We know that BPA is harmful, even at low doses; we know that our children and grandchildren are being exposed to BPA in their food, and we know that safer alternatives already exist and are readily available. Let's act now.

I attended this fall's public hearing at the Board of Environmental Protection about a proposed rule that would ban BPA in food intentionally marketed to children under the age of 3 in Maine. I Dozens of Maine parents, grandparents, and health care professionals spoke in support of the proposed rule.

If the Maine Board of Environmental Protection acts swiftly to approve this new rule to phase out BPA from children's packaging, Maine lawmakers can vote on this important public health decision in the upcoming legislative session.

I am calling on my legislators, Rep. David Cotta and Sen. Roger Katz to support the rule to get BPA out of baby and toddler food packaging.

We should not have to wait any longer to know that the food we give to our children is safe.

Nan Bennett

South China

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