Posted on May 1, 2019
For fifteen years the Asbestos Disease Awareness Organization (ADAO) has had two concurrent goals: to increase awareness of asbestos and its dangers; and to put policies in place that would ban this carcinogen in order to eliminate asbestos-caused diseases. ADAO has shone a light on the danger of this deadly substance and its impact on thousands of American families every year, and along the way, we have become a leader in asbestos education, advocacy, and community support in the United States.
Here’s a look at what we’ve accomplished together and how we’ve grown:
We could not have envisioned these milestones 15 years ago when two grieving families came together to channel their pain into action. We have become a network of more than 50,000 people worldwide and have shared stories from over 200 patients. On your behalf, ADAO has been honored to provide expert testimony before Congress six separate times, and, over the years, have brought this issue of asbestos exposure and its impact on families to some of the nation’s most prominent media outlets.
“We saw that there was a need for a resource that was independent of influence; that was simply [based on] science and medically-based facts,” said the late Doug Larkin, co-founder of ADAO.
As we reflect on our accomplishments, however, one thing becomes immensely clear: we didn’t do it alone. Our progress has been made possible by those who raised their voices before ADAO even began, and those who continue to raise their voices alongside us. We owe a debt of gratitude to the entire ban asbestos movement.
As Dr. Arthur Frank, Professor of Environmental and Occupational Health at Drexel University, said at an early ADAO conference: “The people in this room at this time, to my mind, represent the most important people in the world of asbestos.”
The scope of this movement – and of the ADAO family – is front and center in a new 15th anniversary video we’ve just released. Retracing our steps from day one until now, the video shares insights from medical professionals, prominent academics, legal professionals, artists, labor officials, and – of course – asbestos victims. We are immensely proud to work with such a diverse and passionate group of people.
This includes you, dear reader.
As you look over the report, I hope you are proud as well. Nothing we have accomplished could have been done without your support. Whether you pounded the pavement, contacted your elected officials, or shared your personal story, you helped make this happen. Our report shows how our volunteers, donors, and supporters have helped ADAO become one of the most formidable grassroots movements in the nation, by continuing to educate others and inspire action.
If you’d like to help ensure ADAO can continue its fight through 2019 and beyond, we hope you’ll consider making a tax-deductible contribution to our work. As our anniversary graphic shows, a full 90% of your funds will go to educational programming.
Together, we’ve been making change happen for 15 years, and we’re not stopping now. There is nothing we cannot accomplish when we work together.
ADAO would like to especially thank graphic designer Jessica Mattmuller, for her beautiful and impactful work on our 15th Anniversary Report.