Cancer and health advocates from the Bega Valley and Eurobodalla have made their pitch to those standing for election to the NSW Parliament on March 23.
The NSW Cancer Council’s Saving Life Forum attracted around 100 people to the Bega Civic Centre, all there to add their weight and in some cases, lived experience to the Council’s four key election recommendations:
- Strengthen the Smoke-free Environment Act 2000 to ensure that people working or socialising in a bar or club in NSW are protected from second-hand smoke.
- Amend the Public Health (Tobacco) Act 2008 to ban tobacco vending machines and introduce an annual licence fee to encourage retailers to stop selling. These measures will reduce the risk of young people developing this fatal habit and support smokers to quit.
- Remove junk food advertising from state-owned property to reduce children’s exposure, and support national regulations on food marketing to children.
- Provide funding for public lymphoedema services across NSW to ensure that people with lymphoedema have timely access to evidence-based care, regardless of where they live.
In New South Wales during 2019 more than 46,000 new cases of cancer will be diagnosed and more than 15,000 people will die from the disease.
“This means that every day, more than 120 people in NSW will hear the words ‘you’ve got cancer’ and too many families will lose someone they love,” says Jeff Mitchell, Chief Executive Officer, NSW Cancer Council.
“In March 2019, voters will go to the polls to decide who will govern NSW for the next four years. The next NSW
Government has the power to reduce cancer risk within our community and ensure that people who have experienced cancer get the support they need.
“The priorities outlined in Saving Life 2019: NSW Election Priorities, will support the next NSW Government to take action to further reduce the impact of cancer in our community. Building on the successes of previous governments.
“We look forward to working with the next NSW Government to improve the prevention, diagnosis and treatment of cancer for the benefit of the entire NSW community,” Mr Mitchell says.
Three candidates standing for the seat of Bega gathered to hear the personal stories and experience of locals and to answer the question – “What will you do to make sure that these recommendations are endorsed and adopted by your party?”
Greens candidate, Will Douglas was first to respond followed by Labor’s Leanne Atkinson, and finally the sitting member, representing the Liberal Party, Andrew Constance.
Significantly, Mr Constance as NSW Transport Minister said he would ask that a review be done of fast food advertising on Sydney’s transport network.
Three local’s opened the discussion, sharing their personal stories and experience.
Candelo based nutritionist Nikki Wagner spoke of the influence and impact of processed foods on physical and mental health, Moruya’s Iris White outlined her life with lymphoedema, and Cobargo’s Debra Summer spoke of the impact of second-hand smoke.
Click play to take on the full conversation…
#Region Media’s Ian Campbell acted as moderator for the event.