FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Thursday, January 28, 2021 – Toronto
In 2018, when Jill Andrew, MPP for Toronto-St. Paul’s first championed Bill 61, to get Eating Disorders Awareness Week (EDAW) proclaimed officially in Ontario, it didn’t make it through the house. Thanks to her tenacity, and over many years, that of the co-founders of National Initiative for Eating Disorders (NIED), Bulimia Anorexia Nervosa Association (BANA) and the National Eating Disorder Information Centre (NEDIC), Bill 61 passed unanimously on December 3, 2020, proclaiming Eating Disorders Awareness Week in Ontario February 1st – 7th.
Since 1988, when NEDIC became the national coordinator for EDAW, they, along with other groups across the country, slowly started to officially recognize EDAW. Today, the Yukon, British Columbia, Alberta, Saskatchewan, Nova Scotia, Newfoundland & Labrador, and now Ontario have all proclaimed EDAW.
MPP Andrew, a long-time supporter of the National Eating Disorders Information Centre (NEDIC) and co-founder of Body Confidence Canada, an organization that advocates for equitable and inclusive images, messages, practices and policies supporting body diversity said, “EDAW will help bring attention to the diversity of people who experience Eating Disorders, including Black, and racialized women and girls, queer people, transgender people, disabled people and fat people.”
EDAW is a collective effort from coast-to-coast engaging organizations to host local events, light prominent landmarks in the colour purple, and participate in public education campaigns about Eating Disorders.
Building on EDAW’s previous year’s theme “Eating Disorders Can’t Afford to Wait”, this year’s primary message is “What Happened While We Waited?”. The week will literally and figuratively shine a light on the nuances of the current times — the negative and positive implications of the pandemic — while also holding space for those who have been waiting a very long time for the care they need and deserve.
NIED’s co-founder Wendy Preskow, and NEDIC’s program manager Suzanne Phillips both agree that the proclamation of EDAW every year in Ontario from February 1-7, was a fantastic moment for Eating Disorder advocacy in the province. “It felt like everybody’s hard work was recognized…and individuals who are impacted by Eating Disorders had what they rightfully deserve, which is recognition. It’s a first step, and I think it was a very necessary good first step to give us the energy to keep going.”
For a link to the full story on the proclamation, visit www.nied.ca. For further information about EDAW and a complete list of events, please visit www.nedic.ca. For information about NIED and the work it does on behalf of those challenged by Eating Disorders, please contact:
For further information, please contact:
National Initiative for Eating Disorders – NIED