Free sugar is defined by the World Health Organization and the UN Food and Agriculture Organization in multiple reports as "all monosaccharides and disaccharides added to foods by the manufacturer, cook, or consumer, plus sugars naturally present in honey, syrups, and fruit juices".

JOIN THE CAMPAIGN TO RAISE CONCERN ABOUT SUGAR!

• Sending a letter to your MP as a local constituent – visit the link below to electronically send a letter to your local MP
http://takeaction.heartandstroke.ca/iz#/take_action_steps.step1/Canada/campaign/7

• Using the template provided to send a paper letter to your MP (individually) or to all MPs across the province (representing your provincial group) – Here is a link to all of the mailing addresses for SK MPs
https://www.ourcommons.ca/Parliamentarians/en/members?currentOnly=true&province=SK (If you click on the MPs name you will be directed to their individual page and there is a email and mailing address listed)

• Using template provided to contact The Honourable Ginette Petitpas Taylor, Federal Minister of Health - Email hcminister.ministresc@canada.ca or Ginette.PetitpasTaylor@parl.gc.ca or mail Ginette Petitpas Taylor, House of Commons, Ottawa, ON, K1A 0A6

• This is may be a good piece to use to build your introductory message from. This text is directly form the stop marketing to kids website on the take action page that directs health professionals to send letters to their MPs and to the Federal Minister of Health.

“Parliament is debating Canada’s first federal legislation to restrict food and beverage marketing to children.

With your support, we can ensure this groundbreaking legislation with robust regulations become reality and our children are protected from food and beverage marketing.

Take Action! Here are some advocacy examples and tools for health organizations and professionals.

We need your voice to show government this is an important issue.

Businesses who market junk food to children are not focused on children’s nutrition and they likely see legislation and regulations as a challenge to profit margins. Together, we can counter their interest and promote ours: let’s take a stance for our children and for the health of Canadians.

In short: Canada has a window of opportunity to reach historic milestones in nutrition policy. We must work together to make it happen.” (http://stopmarketingtokids.ca/take-action/)

• Also, please include this message to your members asking them to let me know how they have taken action so we can more accurately measure our collective impact on this important national policy work.

“When you take action, let Heart & Stroke and the Stop M2K Coalition know so that we can assess our collective impact, help promote your good work, and leverage it further! Send us a note at: nicole.ferguson@heartandstroke.ca.”

THE KIDS ARE NOT ALRIGHT: The Heart & Stroke 2017  Report on the Health of Canadians examines how industry is marketing unhealthy food and beverages directly to our children and youth, and how this is affecting their preferences and choices, their family relationships and their health. Our children and youth are bombarded with marketing messages for unhealthy food and beverages. Their health is at stake, and it’s time for this to stop. Are you passionate about creating a healthier future for Canada’s children and youth? Help us advocate to restrict the marketing of unhealthy foods and beverages. Sign up to learn how your actions can help.

The Government of Canada is currently debating Advertising to Children.  We can make our voices heard.  Please consider sending one of the letters made available by the Heart & Stroke Association. The current Minister of Health is Ginette Petitpas Taylor, MP for Moncton—Riverview—Dieppe. The Minister of Health is responsible for maintaining and improving the health of Canadians.

Honorable Ginette Petitpas Taylor, Minister of Health EMAIL
Health Canada
Address Locator 0900C2
Ottawa, Ontario
K1A 0K9

Email:Info@hc-sc.gc.ca
Telephone: 613-957-2991
Toll free: 1-866-225-0709
Facsimile: 613-941-5366
Teletypewriter: 1-800-465-7735 (Service Canada)

Letter to the Minister of Health on behalf of a group or organization

Today’s children are bombarded with food and beverage marketing morning, noon and night, every day of the week. Children and youth are impressionable and should be protected from marketing that are harmful to their health. As a society, we have a duty to keep children and youth safe and give them the best start for a long, healthy life.

According to the Heart & Stroke 2017 Report on the Health of Canadians children and youth spend almost eight hours a day in front of screens including computers, tablets, phones and television. Approximately 90% of food and beverage products advertised to children and youth online and on TV are unhealthy, high in fat, sugar or salt.  “Unhealthy eating is a leading risk for death in Canada,” says Dr. Norm Campbell, Heart & Stroke CIHR Chair in Hypertension. According to the Global Burden of Disease, unhealthy diets were responsible for about 50,000 deaths in Canada in 2015. Since 1979, childhood obesity levels in Canada have tripled: one in three children is overweight or obese. Obesity puts children and adolescents at risk for many health problems, including heart disease, stroke, diabetes and depression. Unfortunately, this may be the first generation of children to have a shorter lifespan than their parents as a result of premature death related to chronic disease.

Regulation on commercial marketing of foods and beverages to children and youth is a critical aspect of any comprehensive food strategy, facilitating the creation of a healthy food environment free of commercial influence from marketing to children. The World Health Organization and other leading health advisory bodies have formally recommended a marketing ban for children. The Ottawa Principles recommend restrictions on all food and beverage marketing as the best approach for effective policy. Several countries including Brazil, Chile, Ireland, Mexico, Norway, UK, Sweden, and Taiwan among others have introduced restrictions on marketing to children as a means to improve population health. Quebec has implemented restrictions on marketing to children. The Quebec advertising ban is associated with an increased probability of reductions in fast-food sales, averaging 13% per week. Quebec also has the lowest rates of obesity among 6-11 years old children and the highest fruit and vegetable consumption rate in Canada. Restrictions around marketing to children are the most cost-effective childhood obesity interventions. Research has shown that 14 - 33% cases of childhood obesity could be prevented through removing unhealthy food advertising on television.

For these reasons, we would like to request to restrict the commercial marketing of foods and beverages  to protect children and support parents. It is essential that the scope of marketing restrictions to children be broad and comprehensive to ensure fulsome protection of young Canadians.

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Saskatchewan Dental Assistants’ Association
P.O. Box 294 Kenaston SK S0G 2N0
T 306.252.2769 | F 306.252.2089
E sdaa@sasktel.net