October 26th, 2016
For Immediate Release
For more information, contact
Elizabeth Austin, 708-912-2247
BREAST CANCER ADVOCATES RESPOND TO GOVERNOR RAUNER
Leading advocates speak out on Facebook Live about impacts of $22 million in lost funding for Illinois Breast and Cervical Cancer Program (IBCCP)
WHO: Teena Francois-Blue, MPH, Associate Director of Community Initiatives and Research, Metropolitan Chicago Breast Cancer Taskforce and Kim Hamilton, Board Member, Sisters Working It Out (SWIO)
WHERE: Metropolitan Chicago Breast Cancer Task Force Facebook page, https://www.facebook.com/MCBCTF/
WHEN: Immediately after Gov. Bruce Rauner’s noon Facebook Live on breast cancer detection/awareness (approximately 12:30 p.m. Wednesday, Oct. 26, 2016)
WHAT: Leading breast cancer advocates respond to Governor Rauner, denounce loss of more than $22 million in state funding for potentially life-saving mammograms, breast exams, pelvic exams and Pap tests for low-income Illinois women
CHICAGO – Responding to Governor Rauner’s “Facebook Live” on breast cancer detection and awareness, breast cancer advocates will hold their own “Facebook Live” to talk about how Illinois’ budget impasse has left low-income women without access to mammograms, breast exams, pelvic exams and Pap tests that could save their lives.
“Since July 1 2015, the Illinois Breast and Cervical Cancer Program has lost $22 million in state funding,” said Teena Francois-Blue, MPH, Associate Director of Community Initiatives and Research for the Metropolitan Chicago Breast Cancer Taskforce. “This program makes it possible for low-income women to get health screenings that detect cancers early, when there are better treatment options. It is tragic that some Illinois women may have lost their chance for early, successful cancer treatment because our state budget was being held hostage for political reasons.”
“When Governor Rauner announced his Facebook Live session, he illustrated it with a photograph of his dog wearing a pink ribbon around her neck, saying, ‘Stella is doing her part to raise awareness and we are, too,’” said Kim Hamilton, Board Member of Sisters Working It Out (SWIO). “Frankly, I find that insulting. Illinois women need access to life-saving screening services, not photographs of family pets.”
Francois-Blue added: “Governor Rauner’s mother-in-law was successfully treated for breast cancer in 1987, and she has been cancer-free ever since. We believe that every woman in Illinois should have that same chance for early detection and a long, healthy life. Unfortunately, many low-income women and women of color don’t have access to high-quality screening and treatment services – a disparity that can cost them their lives. Illinois women don’t need an online chat with a nurse-practitioner; they need reliable funding that will give them access to breast exams, mammograms, pelvic exams and Pap smears.”
This Facebook Live event is being presented by the Metropolitan Chicago Breast Cancer Taskforce and members of the Responsible Budget Coalition, a large, diverse non-partisan coalition of more than 300 organizations unified in support of a fully funded, yearlong state budget with adequate revenue to serve our people and empower our communities.
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