Almost 2.4 million Hoosiers, or two in five people now living in Indiana, will eventually develop cancer in their lifetime. In 2015, 13,000 Indiana residents are expected to die of cancer, translating to approximately 36 people every day. These are only a few of the startling statistics that shed light on the amount of people in Indiana who are affected by this disease. That is why it’s important to join together to show our support, and raise awareness of the ways you can reduce your risks of cancer.
Recently, lawmakers had the opportunity to stand up against cancer by participating in the Suits and Sneakers challenge at the Statehouse. Sponsored by the American Cancer Society (ACS) and the National Association of Basketball Coaches, this event helps promote cancer awareness and support all those affected by the disease. Those who participated were able to leave their dress shoes at home and put on their favorite pair of sneakers in order to promote living a healthy lifestyle. It’s a great opportunity for legislators and staff, on both sides of the aisle, to unite for a common cause.
Every year we host this event, I am truly honored to lace up my sneakers for the day, and show the many Hoosiers, who have fought or continue to fight this terrible disease, that they are not alone. This year, I was particularly excited to see State Rep. David Wolkins stand up in front of the House Chamber to speak on the importance of ACS and the Suits and Sneakers challenge. At this same time last session, we were honoring Rep. Wolkins for his courage while battling cancer.
The American Cancer Society is a national, community-based, voluntary health organization dedicated to preventing cancer, saving lives, and connecting individuals with the resources and help they need. Specifically, they provide helpful information on the ways you can help lower your chances of getting cancer. The most important ways to reduce cancer risk are to maintain a healthy weight, be physically active on a regular basis and follow ACS’s recommended cancer screening guidelines. In fact, screening can significantly increase your chances of detecting cancer early, when it’s more likely to be curable. All of these preventative steps can make a difference in ensuring the health and well-being of you and your family.
For more information on how to help spread awareness and fight back against cancer, please visit www.cancer.org. It’s important that we continue to work together to help spread the message so that one day we might find a cure and put an end to this life-threatening disease.
State Rep. Cindy Ziemke (R-Batesville) represents portions of Rush, Fayette, Franklin, Ripley and Decatur counties.