Posted on November 14, 2014
As the Asbestos Disease Awareness Organization (ADAO) looks forward to our 11th International Asbestos Awareness Conference, April 17-19, 2015, I can’t help but also look back at how far we’ve come. In preparing the “Social Advocacy: Where Knowledge and Community Unite” poster for the International Mesothelioma Interest Group (iMig) conference, I found it difficult to put ADAO’s 2004 – 2014 impact into words. We are who we are because of YOU – our community – a powerful combination of asbestos victims, scientists and international public health leaders, donors, and sponsors, who have and continue to generously give time and dollars to fund ADAO’s education, advocacy, and community support efforts. Words cannot begin to describe this cohesive blend of collective activism and the importance it has had in continuing the fight for an asbestos ban. To better represent the impact ADAO teamed up with Jessica Mattmuller, a talented graphic designer, creating a new “impact infographic” which showcases our impact in words, numbers, and graphics. Easily shared, now, we can let the world know about the force that ADAO has brought to the asbestos fight.
Over the past 10 years ADAO has succeeded in many asbestos awareness accomplishments – education, advocacy and community – combining the three to pose a triple threat in the fight against asbestos. Through our advocacy efforts ADAO has made great strides in improving asbestos concern in Washington. We have participated in three white house meetings, testified at five congressional hearings, and posed as a education resource for congress at 6 congressional staff briefings. We have spread asbestos education farther than it has ever reached before obtaining 3 warning statements on asbestos dangers from the U.S. Surgeon General, securing 10 Asbestos Awareness Week Resolutions, coordinating Global Asbestos Awareness Week to spread this knowledge internationally, and hosting what this year will be our 11th International Asbestos Awareness Conference. Finally we have come together as a united cohesive national and global community. Our ADAO “Share your Story” platforms, which unites our ADAO family and sparks emotional appeal to policy makers, we now have over 100 stories from around the world. ABREA and ADAO have have created the first interactive web based portal – The Global Ban Asbestos Network (GBAN) to share asbestos news in real time from all over the world. Your support, your strength, and your stories has made our accomplishments possible.
Our new impact infographic highlights our accomplishments from 2004 – 2014 and also allows us to visually analyze where we must continue focusing our efforts. Although we continue to educate, there is still no asbestos ban and imports continue. This graphic not only expresses what ADAO has done but where ADAO is headed as we work to protect asbestos victims’ civil rights and public health.
Please join me in thanking Jessica Mattmuller, our infographic designer, whose husband Mike is fighting mesothelioma. Jessica is also the co-creator of the “Make a Pie, Take a Pie… Ban Asbestos!” Challenge and a overall extraordinary human being. ADAO is so proud to call her a part of our ADAO family.
Together, we are making change happen and we are making it now. We need each of you to join the global asbestos struggle, share your story, and donate your time and dollars as you can, to help end the deadly legacy of asbestos.