March 19, 2014
Contact: NCL Communications, Ben Klein, (202) 835-3323, email@example.com
Washington, DC – The following statement is attributable to Sally Greenberg, Executive Director of the National Consumers League.
As the nation’s pioneering consumer organization and one concerned throughout our 115-year history about the health and well-being of Americans, the National Consumers League (NCL) finds it troubling that the current nominee for Surgeon General, Dr. Vivek Murthy, is facing criticism for supporting basic measures to improve our nation’s health. Murthy, a great public health champion, is a strong advocate for the Affordable Care Act and, like the majority of Americans, for including reasonable gun policies as part of our nation’s health agenda. If confirmed, he plans to make combating America’s obesity epidemic a top priority. These issues are exactly what a Surgeon General should include in his or her agenda.
Because of Murthy’s mentioning guns as a health matter, some members of Congress have indicated they would not vote to confirm him. We think this is unfortunate and shortsighted . Gun violence does affect the health of Americans: on average, eight young people under the age of 20 are killed by guns every day. American children die by guns 11 times as often as children in other high-income countries. On average, 32 Americans are murdered with guns every day, and 140 seek emergency room treatment for gun assaults.
NCL has enjoyed strong relationships with past U.S. Surgeons General. In 2000, NCL honored Surgeon General Dr. David Satcher with its highest honor, the Trumpeter Award. Most recently, the 18th Surgeon General Regina Benjamin, also a Trumpeter Award recipient, worked with the League to support and promote our medication adherence campaign, Script Your Future.
President Obama’s Surgeon General nominee is widely respected as a physician and a public health expert. He has degrees from Harvard and Yale, and is an eminently qualified physician. We think he is moderate and thoughtful in his positions, and brings impeccable credentials to the post. The National Consumers League calls upon the Senate to confirm Vivek Murthy to the post of Surgeon General of the United States.
About the National Consumers League
The National Consumers League, founded in 1899, is America’s pioneer consumer organization. Its mission is to protect and promote social and economic justice for consumers and workers in the United States and abroad. For more information, visit www.nclnet.org.