Saturday, July 18, 2009
Advocating for a Healthy Future
Rep. Louise Slaughter from New York's 28th District, seen in the photo, introduced the Protection of Antibiotics for Medical Treatment Act last March, and the discussion around it has been revived amidst the health care reform debates.
PAMTA is of significant importance for both environmental and medical reasons.
According to the Union of Concerned Scientists,
"70 percent of antibiotics produced in this country -- nearly 13 million pounds per year -- are used in animal agriculture for these nontherapeutic purposes. This amount is estimated to be more than four times the amount of drugs used to treat human illness."
If you saw Food, Inc. (which you need to see if you have not already), you would probably remember the discussion about the feeding of antibiotics to animals to account for the settings of the factory farming situation and to make them grow faster.
These antibiotics go through the animals' digestive systems and end up in the ground, from which they will leak into the groundwater. Rep. Slaughter, a microbiologist by profession, spoke about the damaging effect this can have on human resistance to drugs.
Do you want safe food and water? Do you want people and animals do be in good health? I'm sure you do. So, go here to get your voice heard.
The photo is taken from Rep. Slaughter's website: http://www.flickr.com/photos/22483217@N06/