Caitlin McCarthy received her Master of Fine Arts in Creative Writing from Emerson College. An award-winning screenwriter at international film festivals and labs, Caitlin has two feature films in development: WONDER DRUG with producer/star Alysia Reiner and Oscar-nominated director Joan Stein Schimke; and RESISTANCE with director Si Wall. In addition to screenwriting, Caitlin teaches English at an inner-city public high school.
As a DES Daughter, I’m appalled that on Friday the FDA refused the call to ban BPA from food packaging. BPA is the “chemical cousin” of DES – and we all know about the generational devastation of DES exposure. (For decades, DES or diethylstilbestrol was seen as a medical miracle to help women with pregnancy issues and one of the first cash cows for pharmaceutical companies – but was in fact a toxic, carcinogenic drug and one of the biggest medical disasters in history, affecting millions of people worldwide.)
As you know, US Senator John Kerry (D-MA) and US Senator Scott Brown (R-MA) jointly sent a letter to the FDA about a DES apology in 2010. In 2011, the Senators finally received a 3-page response from the FDA. The FDA’s letter did not contain an official apology from the federal government for the DES drug disaster. However, it acknowledged the devastating health consequences of DES, explained FDA initiatives to prevent future drug disasters, and talked about DES as a “tragedy.”
In light of the Senators’ championing of DES victims, please ask them to speak out against the FDA’s refusal to ban BPA from food packaging.
The Senators can be contacted in two ways:
** Fill out email forms for Senator Kerry and Senator Brown. You don’t have to live in Massachusetts to write to them. Also, it doesn’t matter what political party you belong to – the Senators are friendly with each other and willing to work together on issues: http://kerry.senate.gov/contact/ and http://scottbrown.senate.gov/public/index.cfm/contactme.
Feel free to copy and paste the message below (or create your own):
“Dear Senator, The FDA has refused calls to ban BPA from food packaging. BPA is DES’s “chemical cousin.” Everyone in the DES community deeply appreciates your work on obtaining an acknowledgment of DES as a “tragedy” from the FDA last year. Sadly, the FDA hasn’t learned its lesson re: DES – hence its refusal to apologize for the DES drug disaster *and* to ban BPA (DES’s “chemical cousin”) from food packaging. Just think of the millions of babies and children *right now* being exposed to toxic, carcinogenic chemicals similar to DES. Another tragedy is unfolding, thanks to the FDA’s continued inaction on dangerous chemicals. Please help!”
** If you’d rather place a phone call, here are the numbers for their DC offices: Senator Kerry (202) 224-2742; and Senator Brown (202) 224-4543.
(photos: blog.masslive.com; fda.drugs.com; author photo: Pure Style photography)