Will you vote for babies?
Update 3 May 2010: Liberal Democrats, Green Party and Scottish Green Party backs Baby Milk Action pledge to implement Code and Resolutions in the UK and internationally. See below.
There is a General Election in the UK on 6 May 2010. Voters will elect Members of Parliament (MPs) from the different political parties and the winning party will form a government. The opinion polls suggest there may not be a clear winner, in which case a coalition of two or more parties may result.
As candidates are looking for votes it is the time for Baby Milk Action supporters to ask them to pledge to protect babies, mothers and their families by regulating the baby food industry.
We have produced a simple leaflet that you can print off so that when candidates come knocking on your door, you can ask them to sign our pledge. Click here to download. Alternatively, you can use the text below as a model to send a message to the candidates in your area.
There is no central registry of election candidates and the Electoral Registration Office will only display the final list of candidates about a week before the election, so you will have to check your local paper, the material coming through your door from the candidates or search on the internet for contact details.
Baby Milk Action has written to the leaders of the main parties (letters attached). We are still waiting for replies.
If any of the candidates in your constituency do sign the Baby Milk Action pledge, please contact us to let us know.
If you are a candidate, please contact us to register your support for the pledge and send us a signed copy in the post (click here to download).
Dear [Candidate's name],
In the forthcoming General Election I will be voting for babies!
If you are elected will you protect babies, mothers and their families?
If you agree to the Baby Milk Action pledge given below, please let me know. If you have not sent an email and/or signed pledge form to Baby Milk Action already, you can do so via: http://info.babymilkaction.org/ukelection2010
Your reply - and that of your party leader to Baby Milk Action's letter on this subject - will influence how I decide to vote.
Baby Milk Action pledge form
I pledge that if I am elected to the House of Commons I will encourage the Government to protect breastfeeding and to protect babies fed on formula. In particular to:
• Strengthen the UK Infant Formula and Follow-on Formula Regulations to bring them into line with the International Code of Marketing of Breastmilk Substitutes and subsequent, relevant Resolutions of the World Health Assembly
(I understand that the 23 health worker organisations and mother support groups in the Baby Feeding Law Group and the UN Committee on the Rights of the Child have called for this and that the Government's own Scientific Advisory Committee on Nutrition and enforcement bodies have called for promotion of follow-on formula and health claims to be banned alongside the ban on infant formula advertising).
• Support and defend the International Code and Resolutions around the world and at the United Nations and other international organisations
(I understand that UNICEF has stated: "Marketing practices that undermine breastfeeding are potentially hazardous wherever they are pursued: in the developing world, WHO estimates that some 1.5 million children die each year because they are not adequately breastfed. These facts are not in dispute.")
[Candidates: Delete the following if it does not apply]
I also wish to register my support for the boycott of Nestlé, found to be the worst of the baby food companies