U.S. Senator Sheldon Whitehouse (D-RI) has introduced new legislation to establish a "Commission to Accelerate the End of Breast Cancer," whose mission will be to help end breast cancer by 2020. The legislation, the Accelerating the End of Breast Cancer Act (S. 3237), is cosponsored by U.S. Senators Susan Collins (R-ME), Sherrod Brown (D-OH), Lisa Murkowski (R-AK), Jeanne Shaheen (D-NH), Dean Heller (R-NV), Mark Warner (D-VA), and Chuck Grassley (R-IA).
"Breast cancer continues to affect too many of our mothers, wives, sisters, and friends," said Whitehouse. "This bill sets an ambitious goal of ending breast cancer by 2020, and will help drive our efforts going forward to put an end to this tragic disease."
In Rhode Island, 136 out of every 100,000 women suffer from breast cancer, which is nearly 12 percent above the national average.
The Accelerating the End of Breast Cancer Act would create a commission to identify promising research, encourage partnerships between government and the private sector, and create opportunities for trans-disciplinary collaboration that may advance the mission of ending breast cancer.
The bill is supported locally by the Rhode Island Breast Cancer Coalition, which has been working for two decades to make sure the voices of breast cancer patients in the state are heard in Washington.
"The membership of the Rhode Island Breast Cancer Coalition, representing 30,000 Rhode Islanders with the disease, is thrilled with the introduction of Accelerating the End of Breast Cancer Act. RIBCC is part of the leadership of the National Breast Cancer Coalition which set the deadline to end breast cancer by January 1, 2020. This legislation will be instrumental in achieving our goal," said Marlene McCarthy, co-founder and volunteer director of the Rhode Island Breast Cancer Coalition.
Earlier this year, Whitehouse was honored by the National Breast Cancer Coalition (NBCC) at their annual Congressional Reception. The Senator was singled out for his overall support for efforts to end breast cancer, and for his then-ongoing work to craft this legislation.
"Senator Whitehouse believes in our mission to end breast cancer, he's a leader on our issue. We know that with his support this bill will become law so we can do the work necessary to save women's lives," Fran Visco, President, National Breast Cancer Coalition, 24 year survivor.