portland independent media center  
images audio video
newswire article reposts united states

health

Turn Off TV Week

DRS. KOOP, BRAZELTON, SATCHER PROMOTE TV-FREE WEEK
Leading Doctors Say: Turn off TV, Turn on Life!
WASHINGTON, DC - Three of America?s best-known doctors - C. Everett Koop, T. Berry Brazelton, and David Satcher - today released a statement encouraging American children to watch much less television and to participate in a TV-free week this month. TV-Turnoff Week 2003 begins today, April 21, and continues through April 27. The statement follows.

Observing that ?millions of Americans will participate in a TV-free week? this April, the doctors said, ?[W]e strongly encourage all families to take such a hiatus from television and to limit their children?s television time year-round.?

The doctors continued, ?In order to thrive, [children] need to engage in healthy activities, such as exercising, interacting with family and friends, reading, and exploring the world around them. These are precisely the kinds of activities often displaced by excessive television time.?

The ninth annual TV-Turnoff Week will take place April 21-27. The Week is promoted nationally by TV-Turnoff Network, a nonprofit organization, and spearheaded on the ground by more than 17,000 volunteer organizers - doctors, educators, parents, religious leaders, and other adults who interact with children. Some 7 million children and adults are expected to participate.

For many participants, the Week becomes the springboard to making lasting change: watching less television, engaging in more screen-free activities, and choosing the programs they do watch more selectively.

?We are thrilled to have this strong statement of support from such esteemed physicians,? said TV-Turnoff Network Executive Director Frank Vespe. ?They make clear that by helping our kids to turn off the TV, we can help them to turn on healthy physical activity.?