OTTAWA, May 6 /CNW/ - Marking National Aboriginal Diabetes Awareness
Day, Assembly of First Nations (AFN) National Chief Shawn A-in-chut
Atleo stated First Nations will continue to urge governments and all
Canadians to work together with First Nations to support diabetes
prevention and healthy living for First Nation citizens and First
"One in five First Nation citizens is diabetic, a statistic well above
the national average," said AFN National Chief Shawn Atleo. "National
Aboriginal Diabetes Awareness Day is one of many opportunities to raise
awareness of the health gap between First Nations and other Canadians.
The health and safety of our people is an urgent priority as we advance
our plans to work with the newly formed federal government to address,
and close this gap. Diabetes prevention and care, food security and
consistent and adequate access to healthy foods are just some of the
key factors in these efforts."
The AFN works to ensure healthy living and appropriate investments in
diabetes prevention through a number of initiatives and partnerships
and advocacy efforts.
Health Canada's Aboriginal Diabetes Initiative has allowed for the
implementation of several First Nation-driven projects, including
training of Community Diabetes Workers, supports for nutrition,
screening and physical activity programs. The recently renewed
initiative provides important initiatives for children, youth, parents
and families; food security plans; diabetes in pre-pregnancy and
pregnancy; and training for home and community care nurses.
In a broad effort to provide better supports for athletes and healthy
living in First Nation communities, AFN launched an initiative called
IndigenACTION last July. This youth-led initiative brings together
Indigenous athletes and the public and private sectors to support
healthy living, recreation and sport in Indigenous communities. AFN
is also in discussions with American Indian Tribes on an online
community-based initiative called Just-Move-It.
The AFN is continuing to identify opportunities and make recommendations
for improved and equitable health care and health services for First
Nations, particularly now that the renewal discussions for the 2004
Health Accord have begun. The current joint Health Accord is set to
National Aboriginal Diabetes Awareness Day is recognized annually on the
first Friday in May.
The Assembly of First Nations is the national organization representing
First Nations citizens in Canada.
SOURCE ASSEMBLY OF FIRST NATIONS
For further information:
Don Kelly, Assembly of First Nations A/Communications Director
613-241-6789 ext. 334 or cell: 613-292-2787 or email firstname.lastname@example.org
Jenna Young, Assembly of First Nations Communications Officer
613-241-6789, ext 401 or cell: 613-314-8157 or email email@example.com
Alain Garon, Assembly of First Nations Bilingual Communications Officer 613-241-6789, ext 382 or cell: 613-2920857 or email firstname.lastname@example.org