2011 Parkinson's Awareness Month

April is Parkinson’s Awareness Month

Celebrate.  Commemorate.  Educate.

On April 6, 2011, the United States Senate officially declared April as the national Parkinson's Awareness Month!

The Parkinson's Action Network (PAN) is grateful to U.S. Senator Debbie Stabenow (D-MI) for introducing Senate Resolution 134, and to Senators Johnny Isakson (R-GA), Mark Udall (D-CO), Mike Johanns (R-NE), and Kay Bailey Hutchison (R-TX) for joining as cosponsors.  With their support, and that of the Congressional Caucus on Parkinson's Disease, our community will continue to raise awareness of Parkinson's disease both in April and throughout the year.

"As a co-chair of the Senate Caucus on Parkinson’s disease, I am working to find better treatments for this devastating neurological disease.  That is why I am proud to introduce legislation recognizing April as Parkinson’s Awareness Month," said Senator Debbie Stabenow (D-MI).  "We know so little about neurological diseases such as Parkinson’s but we all know someone who has been impacted by them.  With this resolution, we honor those who live with Parkinson’s and encourage those conducting the medical research that could hold the key to new breakthrough treatments."

"You can't go up to more than a handful of people on the street before finding someone with a mother, father, brother, sister, or close friend who's been touched by Parkinson's," said Senator Mark Udall (D-CO).  "This makes our task of increasing awareness of this horrible disease that much more important - there is a continuing need for more robust biomedical research, better treatments, and more community involvement to fight Parkinson's.  That's why I am proud to introduce this resolution with my Senate colleagues."

Below are some tools you can use to help educate your local community about Parkinson’s disease, and encourage local governments to issue their own proclamations supporting our mission to find a cure.

Local Government Proclamations:  We encourage all Parkinson's advocates across the country to work with their state and local governments to proclaim April as Parkinson’s Awareness Month.  Please contact us to let us know of your successes; we will keep an updated list of state and local proclamations on this Web page.

Template Letter

Sample Proclamation

Letter to the Editor:  Take a moment to encourage your U.S. Senators and Representatives to support Parkinson’s research by submitting a letter to the editor of your local newspaper.

Sample Letter to the Editor

Reach out to Local Media:  Email your local TV stations to let them know April is Parkinson’s Awareness Month.  Let them know you are a local resource if they have any questions about Parkinson’s.  Invite them to spend a few hours with you to see what living with Parkinson’s is really like.  Encourage them to attend and cover a local support group meeting or other activity, so they can meet others in the community. 

Social Media: Using social media tools like Twitter, Facebook, and your personal blog is a great way to raise awareness of Parkinson’s disease year-round, not just in April.  Send us links to your blog posts, so we can include them here.

On Twitter, you can use your 140 characters to encourage people to check out the PAN website, write to their Senators and Representatives asking them to support Parkinson’s research, or encourage your followers to learn more about Parkinson's.

Here’s a PD Tulip image you can use as your Facebook profile photo or Twitter avatar for the month of April, or use in church newsletters, community fliers, and other outreach tools:

(right click to save image)

We look forward to hearing from you about the ways you celebrate, commemorate, and educate about Parkinson’s Awareness Month.  Let us know how we can help you spread the word!

State and local proclamations:

State of Arizona
City of Scottsdale, Arizona
City of La Mirada, California
State of Arkansas
State of Colorado
City of Denver, Colorado
City of Naples, Florida
City of Tampa, Florida
State of Illinois
City of East Peoria, Illinois
City of Morton, Illinois
City of Pekin, Illinois
City of Peoria, Illinois
The Commonwealth of Massachusetts
City of Ann Arbor, Michigan
City of Northville, Michigan
Washtenaw County, Michigan
State of Missouri
State of Nevada
State of New Jersey
City of Springfield, Ohio
City of Ashland, Oregon
The Commonwealth of Pennsylvania
State of South Carolina
City of Watertown, South Dakota
City of Midland, Texas
State of Wisconsin

Letters to the Editor highlighting Parkinson’s Awareness Month have appeared in these newspapers:

Ashland Daily Tidings (Ashland, OR)
East Peoria Times-Courier (East Peoria, IL)
Los Altos Town Crier (Los Altos, CA)
Naples News (Naples, FL)
Peoria Journal-Star (Peoria, IL)
Whittier Daily News (Whittier, CA)