I’m breaking my blogging hiatus to bring you this important petition. You may remember my post last month about Dietitians for Professional Integrity. I appreciate your words of support, and now is the time to act.
You can show your support for my profession and for me personally by signing this petition on Change.org. Once you are registered with Change.org, it is a simple click to sign. I hope you’ll take a few seconds to do so. My colleagues and I are doing this in the interest of dietitians and in the interest of you.
We’re not saying that people should boycott all products from these companies; that’s a personal decision, but there should be no place for junk food companies in a nutrition organization. These partnerships pose troubling conflicts of interest, threaten the credibility of the Registered Dietitian credential, and limit the Academy’s ability to create or support policies that protect public health.
When junk food giants are allowed to sponsor our conferences and provide continuing “education” to Registered Dietitians, our credential — which we worked hard for and value — loses credibility in the eyes of the public. These alliances run so deep that dietitians can attend webinars – where these companies tell them that soda is unfairly vilified, and that sugary cereals are a healthful way for children to start their day – to earn “continuing education” credits for re-certification.
These companies spend millions of dollars every year marketing the very products that contribute to our nation’s ever-worsening health, and they actively fight initiatives for better health and to curb marketing to children. Some organizations, like the American College of Nutrition, have realized these partnerships are problematic, and stopped taking money from Big Food. I know The Academy can do this too.
Dietitians for Professional Integrity – a group of over 4,000 Registered Dietitians, health professionals, and conscious consumers – is asking The Academy to cut ties with food companies that not only contribute to our nation’s worsening public health epidemic, but have also been challenged by respected non-profits like Oxfam for questionable corporate practices.
Many of us have expressed our concerns to the Academy for years, to no avail. This is why we need you, members of the public, to raise your voice and support this campaign.
Please also share this petition with your networks on Facebook and Twitter. The faster we can get signatures, the better.