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Volunteers urged to support CAN network to defeat cancer

At the latest board meeting of the Butler County Chapter of the American Cancer Society, Charlene Powell, advocacy chair, shared some details about the sister citizen advocacy group to the ACS: Cancer Action Network (CAN).

“CAN is working hand in hand with the American Cancer Society to help stamp cancer out. It is about holding lawmakers accountable for their actions, asking them to not just give lip service, but to actually take a role in helping save people’s lives,” Powell explained.

The group was first mobilized in September 2006, when 10,000 ACS CAN volunteers, a grassroots army from across the country, rallied at “Celebration on the Hill” in Washington, D.C. to make cancer a national legislative priority. During the 109th Congress ACS CAN advocates sent more than 180,000 messages opposing legislation that would have eliminated coverage for mammograms and colorectal screenings. The measure ultimately failed, due in part to the public outcry.

“As of January 2007, more than 25 states plus Washington, D.C. and Puerto Rico have passed legislation for smoke-free public places, thanks to the efforts of ACS CAN and partner organizations,” Powell said.

“Jessica (Garrard, ACS community representative), I and other from Butler County will be going to the Capitol on Tuesday for a press conference about our smoke-free campaign in Alabama. We encourage others to get involved and become members of CAN.”

For more information about the Cancer Action Network, visit their website at www.acscan.org.