From the Executive DirectorEDletter

Dear Friends in Prevention,


This fall we refocused discussions around Breast Cancer Awareness Month and helped cast the rosy glow of October in a more realistic light. As we shift into the winter holidays, we carry this ambition forward with events, educational outreach, and new Let's Talk Prevention: Reducing Toxic Exposures tour locations. 

This fall, we launched our Let's Talk Prevention: Reducing Toxic Exposures tour. Along the way, we made many new friends in prevention. We are very grateful for our supporters at Fenway Health, Women's Health Institute, Women and Infants Hospital, Harrington Memorial Hospital, Tufts New England Medical Center, MA Public Health Association, Alliance for a Healthy Tomorrow, and Tufts University. To continue to support this important public health initiative, the tour materials will be exhibited at community centers, colleges, hospitals, and health centers throughout Massachusetts for the remainder of 2014 and into 2015.

During this season of giving, we invite you to support the Massachusetts Breast Cancer Coalition's important work
of breast cancer prevention. Please show your support by making a tax exempt contribution before the end of the year. Your gift may be made in honor or memory of loved ones affected by breast cancer, or you may make a general donation. Either way, your charitable dollars unequivocally work for the prevention of breast cancer long after the holiday season.

We send you warm wishes for a happy holiday.

In gratitude,

Cheryl Osimo signature
Cheryl Osimo
Executive Director

Holiday Greetings from 

the MBCC Board of Directorsholiday


During the holiday season more than ever, our thoughts turn gratefully to those who have made our progress towards the prevention of breast cancer possible. 



In this spirit we say, simply but sincerely, thank you and best wishes for the holiday season and a happy New Year to you, your family and friends.

-- Margo Simon Golden, President; Lisa Foley, Vice President & Secretary; Gerry Swift, Treasurer; and board members Steve D'Amico, Dr. Michael Misialek and Erika Keller Rogoff 

Starting the Conversation with Let's Talk Prevention: Reducing Toxic ExposuresLTP 


Encouraging a discussion between Health Professionals and their Patients


Let's Talk Prevention Tour Collage  


Written by Dr. Michael Misialek

As a pathologist I regularly diagnose cancer. It is a tough diagnosis because I know that behind the slide are a patient, a life and a family whose lives will be forever changed. Unfortunately it is a diagnosis that I make far too often. Imagine if I didn't have to make that diagnosis. Most of the current funding in cancer research is directed at early diagnosis and treatment, but what about prevention? Prevention is the ultimate way to stop cancer and many chronic diseases. Prevention is the Massachusetts Breast Cancer Coalition's mission. Out of this passion grew the Let's Talk Prevention program.

We need to bring prevention, exposure reduction, and chemicals of concern to the forefront of our discussions about public health. To help facilitate these discussions and make this important public health topic more palatable, the Massachusetts Breast Cancer Coalition has created a

one-of-a-kind booklet for health professionals and a medical brochure for patients. These materials fill a crucial gap in community outreach and understanding. We must take steps to reduce our exposure to chemicals of concern to improve public health. 


The Let's Talk Prevention: Reducing Toxic Exposure booklet and the pamphlet are presented in a way that will help us further in our efforts to reduce all environmentally linked diseases, including breast cancer.


The Need for the Let's Talk Prevention Program:

This program is in direct response to several federal reports, from the President's Cancer Panel, the Interagency Breast Cancer and Environmental Research Coordinating Committee, which recommend increased attention to the link between environmental factors and disease, especially cancer. Additionally, information from the National Institute of Environmental Health Sciences supports actions to reduce toxic exposures. The burden of environmental linked diseases is often underestimated and not often discussed, even in medical programs. 


Importance of the Let's Talk Prevention Program:

The program is very practical. A handy tri-fold brochure is easy enough for patients to take home with them, study the suggestions, and implement the practical steps to reduce their exposure and the exposure of their families. The medical booklet is spiral bound, durable, and easy to keep as a desk resource for medical professionals when speaking with patients. I am excited and pleased to see the Massachusetts Breast Cancer Coalition take the initiative to develop the Let's Talk Prevention: Reducing Toxic Exposures program. Having this preventative discussion with patients may help me avoid the tough conversations with patients and help them avoid a painful diagnosis that is life changing. These materials not only provide doctors with a starting point for a critical dialogue between health professionals and their patients, but they also support continued public health education on the importance of reducing daily exposure to chemicals of concern.


The Let's Talk Prevention Tour:

The Let's Talk Prevention tour raises awareness that chemicals of concern are something that we should all be aware of. This is a state-wide initiative. The materials can be easily exhibited and displayed at hospitals, health centers, community centers, libraries, high schools and colleges. It can be tailored to the specific needs of a community and can include: a community outreach table in a lobby or oncology office, exhibition at a health and wellness fair, speaking engagements and lectures, special events, private events, and hospital staff meetings.  Educational outreach in our communities is tantamount to the success of reducing toxic exposures. The Let's Talk Prevention patient brochure's availability in English, Spanish, and Korean (and more languages to come) is a wonderful resource for a variety of demographics and different communities through Massachusetts.


Expanding the Reach of the Let's Talk Prevention Program: 

If a hospital, health center, community center, library, high school, college, or private group has an interest in exhibiting the Let's Talk Prevention materials, hosting a presentation about toxic exposures reduction, and sharing the materials, please email with the subject line: Let's Talk Prevention Tour.

Please join me in supporting the program. For more information about this important public health initiative facilitated by the Massachusetts Breast Cancer Coalition and to see when the Let's Talk Prevention tour will be coming to a location near you and to download the

medical booklet for health professionals and the brochure (in Spanish and English) for patients, please click here

Dr. Michael Misialek is a physician at Newton-Wellesley Hospital, specializing in Anatomic and Clinical Pathology and a Board Member of Massachusetts Breast Cancer Coalition.
MBCC Chairwoman Cheryl Reeve exhibits Let's Talk Prevention materials at the Massachusetts Public Health Association Annual Meeting & Expo


Research Updates Video Series
The latest video in this series features Silent Spring Institute Research Scientist, Robin Dodson, ScD, who expands upon a Silent Spring Institute consumer products study that looks at endocrine disrupting and asthma associated chemicals founds in consumer products. As an informed consumer, learn how you can reduce your toxic exposures:

Can We Reduce Toxics Exposure by Changing Products? Silent Spring Institute's Consumer Products Study

Become an advocate for prevention by clicking the image above to watch and share the video!

Click here to watch other videos in the series.
Tribal Chief to NSTAR: Stop SprayingNSTAR

The most recent implementation of NSTAR's poison plan of herbicide spraying throughout the Commonwealth and beyond found NSTAR in stiff disagreement with a family of Herring Pond Wampanoag Indians living on tribal land in Bourne, MA. The Chief of the Herring Pond Wampanoag Indian's letter notified NSTAR that spraying on private land under the rights-of-way (ROWs) on their tribal property is a violation of aboriginal rights. Much of the land under the ROWs state-wide is privately owned. NSTAR's spraying of herbicides without the owner's knowledge or consent is a clear violation of human rights that only adds to the complexity of the situation. Additional Cape properties with aboriginal rights may be identified soon. 

In an interview with the Bourne Enterprise newspaper, the Herring Pond Wampanoag Chief Wayne Manter said that the Herring Pond Indian Plantation covers 3,000 acres, and he and his wife live on approximately one acre on the plantation. He has lived on the land his entire life, and generations of his family have lived there as well. The chief explained that he and his wife get all their food and water from the plantation. Water is taken from a well, while food comes from fish they catch, animals they hunt (including deer and pheasant), and fruit grown on bushes. The couple said they are concerned that chemicals in the spray used by NSTAR in its vegetation management program may have found its way into their food and water. They said that they and several neighbors have also experienced some health issues that they suspect might be connected to NSTAR's spraying. "NSTAR did not inform the Herring Pond Indians that the water or food sources on the Plantation would be sprayed with herbicides not meant for human consumption," Manter said.

Many property owners on and abutting the NSTAR power lines are farming their own land and harvesting crops which may have been sprayed with herbicides that are not registered for agricultural use or even for use on residential property. (Click here for a list of these herbicides.) Those herbicides are in fact being sprayed by NSTAR and presumably consumed by abutters along with their potential to migrate through sandy soils to groundwater.

Click here for the full NSTAR Update, including immediate actions you can take to prevent NSTAR spraying in your community.

Submitted by Sue Phelan (   
or 508.362.5927)

In this Issue



Tip to Reduce Your ExposureTips

baby with fruit
Buy organic produce as often as possible. Fresh is best, but opt for dried or frozen instead of canned. This will reduce exposure to pesticide residues on produce and food additives in cans such as BPA and phthalates. 

Tip provided by: Let's Talk Prevention: Reducing Toxic Exposures, an educational program to increase discussions about environmental exposures between health professionals and patients. 

Environmental Health NewsNews

2014 Report on Carcinogens
Silent Spring
Research Paper
Rally Against Proposed Natural Gas Pipeline
Can Jamaica Plain businesses go carcinogen free?
EPA Adds 23 Chemicals to Key List for Scrutiny
Dow Chemical and Monsanto Are At It Again
Calls to Ban Toxic Chemicals Fall on Deaf Ears


Upcoming EventsEvents

Follow our blog to learn more about these events as they approach.
Festival of Giving Trees  Event and Lecture  December 5, 2014
Lesbians and Friends Dance January 24, 2015
Against the Tide
Registration is open!

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About MBCC

The Massachusetts Breast Cancer Coalition (MBCC) is dedicated to preventing environmental causes of breast cancer through community education, research advocacy, and changes to public policy. MBCC is the only education and advocacy non-profit in the country working closely with an environmental research organization toward breast cancer prevention. Thank you for supporting our efforts toward breast cancer prevention. Learn more.

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