30 Oct

Children’s Health Crisis Ignored on the Campaign Trail

The Canary Party Challenges 2012 Presidential Candidates on Three Key Healthcare Questions

“The U.S. Presidential election is down to the wire, with both candidates in a dead heat”, states Mark Blaxill, Chairman of the Canary Party. “What can set one man apart to win? Bold, innovative ideas on healthcare policy-making.”

“In an effort to draw attention to problems affecting every American”,continues Blaxill, “The Canary Party has three hard-hitting questions for the 2012 Presidential Candidates. We are asking them to break the deadlock of denial about environmental toxins, iatrogenic causality, and the unprecedented intrusion of marketing into consumer healthcare decision-making.”

“Our first question is, ‘Why are so many American children sick?’” Canary Party Founder, Jennifer VanDerHorst-Larson says. “According to the 2007 National Survey of Children’s Health, 43% of children in our country have a chronic illness, and according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, almost 14% of children ages 3-17 have a developmental disability.American infant mortality has dropped to 41st worldwide, behind Cuba and Estonia. Autism rates have exploded, and SAT scores are declining again for the first time in decades. What frustrates me,” she continues, “is that current discussions on health care have focused on the questions of costs and insurance but have not addressed the more important questions like ‘Why are so many American children sick?’ and ‘What needs to be done to stop the new childhood epidemics?’ We need a leader who will pledge to proactively address this crisis in children’s health by focusing national health policy on the environmental causes that have triggered these epidemics.”

“Our second concern is improving vaccine safety,” states Katie Weisman, Executive Director of the Canary Party. “As the number of mandated childhood vaccines has doubled over the last two decades, we have concerns over conflicts of interest within Health and Human Services. HHS agencies now develop, approve, recommend and judge injury claims for vaccines in addition to profiting from patents on them. This does not happen in any other industry.  At the same time, over 89% of parents in a 2010 survey reported that vaccine safety was their number one medical research priority.”Weisman continues, “Reform is needed to restore confidence to the national vaccine program. In the U.S., we have a widely respected model in the National Transportation Safety Board, which is an independent agency that lies outside the Department of Transportation. The Canary Party would like to see unbiased assessment of vaccine safety risks and benefits through the creation of a National Vaccine Safety Board and we are asking the candidates to support that.”

“Our third candidate pledge is focused on direct-to-consumer advertising,” says Blaxill. “Of all the advanced economies in the world, only the United States and New Zealand permit unconstrained direct-to-consumer advertising of pharmaceutical products [John Abramson, Overdosed America 2008 p.80]. Starting in the 1980s, a series of FDA rulings relaxed previous disclosure requirements for such advertising. As a result of the FDA’s 1997 guidance on ‘adequate provision’ of risk information, DTC advertising, which was only $985 million in 1996, skyrocketed to $4.2 billion in 2005. This explosive change in pharmaceutical advertising has promoted the use of potentially dangerous drugs, allowed their manufacturers to wield vast influence over mainstream media outlets, and weakened the integrity and independence of American journalism on health issues. We are asking the candidates to restore integrity to broadcast media by issuing an executive order restoring full disclosure requirements for direct-to-consumer pharmaceutical advertising.”


Because American children are now the sickest generation ever, the Canary Party calls on President Obama and Governor Romney to pledge support for research on environmental causes of illnesses, to create an independent agency to oversee vaccine safety and to better regulate direct-to-consumer advertising.

[The Canary Party is a movement created to stand up for the victims of medical injury, environmental toxins and industrial foods by restoring balance to our free and civil society and empowering consumers to makehealth and nutrition decisions that promote wellness.]

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