Dear Editor:

Cancer hasn't stopped. So neither have we. Every year, the American Cancer Society Cancer Action Network brings cancer survivors and advocates to the state capitol to let lawmakers know that preventing suffering and death from cancer must be a top priority. Although we could not attend in person this year, my fellow advocates and I held a virtual day of action where we called on lawmakers to make fighting cancer a top priority.

Even as we face this pandemic, we are still facing skyrocketing youth tobacco use. That is why we asked our lawmakers to increase funding to the state's Tobacco Use Prevention and Cessation Program. Properly funding these programs has been proven to reduce tobacco use rates, and ultimately combat tobacco-related illness and death.

We also asked lawmakers to support legislation that would protect our youth from the using indoor tanning devices. The use of indoor tanning devices before age 35 increases and individual's lifetime risk of melanoma by 95 percent. By preventing children from using indoor devices, we can reduce skin cancer rates and save lives.

We let lawmakers know that volunteers across the state are counting on the them to take a stand against cancer by supporting what works to prevent some cancer diagnoses. It is time to finish the fight against the devastating disease.

Catherine Blackstone

ACS CAN Volunteer

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