LETTER: Invest in polio elimination strategy

One Greater Victoria resident would like to see polio eradicated in her lifetime

Imagine a world with smallpox. Now imagine a world without polio.

In 1998, 40 children were infected by polio every hour. In 2016 fewer than 40 children were infected by polio during the entire year. This is amazing progress, and we are actually poised to eradicate this disease from the face of the earth, such as we did with smallpox.

However, every child with polio poses a threat, and it will take political will and financial commitment to reach the hardest to reach and isolated.

The only way to address polio is through prevention. In 2015, it was assessed that an additional $1.5 billion US would be required to eradicate polio by decade’s end.

Canada should take a leadership role and provide an additional pledge of $150 million to ensure we finish this job once and for all. I would like to call upon the Hon. Marie-Claude Bibeau, Minister of International Development and La Francophonie to help make this happen, as I would like to be a part of the generation that eradicates polio.

Connie Lebeau