For release: March 30, 2007
March, 2007 – In the March issue of Nutrition Industry Executive magazine (http://vitaminretailer.com/NIE/2007/03/NIE0307FirstWord-WhatHappensNewYork. htm), James Gormley reports that there are four new bills in New York State that have been introduced by NY State Assemblyman Felix Ortiz (D-51st District) – six if you count two companion bills in the NY Senate. These bills take aim at consumers by targeting all supplement companies that sell into New York, which is virtually every manufacturer that exists; if passed, they would set an example certain to spread to other states. Earlier this month Citizens for Health mobilized its members in New York, and so far 1000 citizen activists have made their voices heard in opposition to this bill.
Please call your friends and family in New York State and encourage them to make their voices heard as well – forward this email to all the New Yorkers you know! New Yorkers, click here and tell your representatives to vote “No”! http://www.democracyinaction.org/dia/track.jsp?key=312723698&url_num=2& amp;url=http%3A%2F%2Fwww.democracyinaction.org%2Fdia%2ForganizationsORG%2FCi tizens%2Fcampaign.jsp%3Fcampaign_KEY%3D6982
The following is a list of the bills and what they entail:
Bill A3944 would require “that anyone selling dietary supplements that make health or appearance claims possess competent and scientific evidence substantiating those claims”; it would also require a warning statement on the product label or “handout” if the product claim is not approved by the US Food and Drug Administration (FDA).
Bill A4014 would prevent school employees, especially coaches, from recommending dietary supplements to students and would require schools to warn students of the risks of supplements.
Bill A3357 would establish a dietary supplements safety committee that would, apparently, create “adequate standards and enforcement for manufacturing, safety and effectiveness” of dietary supplements.
Bill A2068 would require labeling to indicate which products have been tested by the FDA for “purity.”
If enacted, these bills would:
- Create a completely unnecessary layer of bureaucracy at the state level (attempting to usurp Federal powers)
- Limit consumers’ access, and interfere with their right, to important information about supplements
- Place an unnecessary economic burden on the nutritional and dietary supplement industry and its customers without providing any additional value to consumers.
These bills are not just bad for consumers of natural products—they are bad for the state of New York, and would set a dangerous precedent for the rest of the country.
NY residents click here and act now to preserve your access to supplements! http://www.democracyinaction.org/dia/track.jsp?key=312723698&url_num=3& amp;url=http%3A%2F%2Fwww.democracyinaction.org%2Fdia%2ForganizationsORG%2FCi tizens%2Fcampaign.jsp%3Fcampaign_KEY%3D6982
For example, A3944 would promote a different, unwarranted, and unnecessary double standard for dietary supplement makers who sell products in New York. The costs of compliance would drive up the costs of products for the millions of consumers statewide who depend upon inherently safe supplements for health and well-being. It would also force many manufacturers to relocate to other states, while those who remain would pass their greater costs on down to consumers, forcing those same consumers to, in turn, look to other states for the supplements upon which they depend. And, if this policy spreads to the United States as a whole, there won’t be any other states left to which to turn!
We at Citizens for Health join with the National Nutritional Foods Association-East in strongly opposing these bills, and urge you to tell your friends and family in New York State to do the same. At best, they are unnecessary because sufficient regulations, enforcement and oversight already exist at the Federal level, like the Dietary Supplement Health and Education Act (DSHEA). At worst and realistically, the bills are burdensome and have the potential to create a confusing and unfairly hostile environment for supplements in New York State that would be used as a precedent for the establishment of similar regulations across the country. NY residents click here to make your voice heard – stop these bills now! http://www.democracyinaction.org/dia/track.jsp?key=312723698&url_num=4& amp;url=http%3A%2F%2Fwww.democracyinaction.org%2Fdia%2ForganizationsORG%2FCi tizens%2Fcampaign.jsp%3Fcampaign_KEY%3D6982