2.What to do if you contact the FSA
NOTE: As Eve makes very clear, the most important thing to do to express your concern at the behaviour of the UK's Food Standards Agency (FSA) is to contact your elected representatives at a national level, eg your Member of Parliament. Item 2 offers advice on how best to have an impact if you decide to also contact the FSA.
1.Angry about FSA bias in public "dialogue"? TAKE ACTION!
From: Eve Mitchell, Coordinator - GM Freeze <eveATgmfreeze.org>
Date: 28 May 2010 13:05
Subject: angry about FSA bias in public "dialogue"?
Several people have written to me today expressing anger about the FSA story from yesterday (Dr Wallace resigning from the Steering Group of the FSA "dialogue" on the grounds it is a pro-GM PR exercise at taxpayers' expense - see http://www.gmfreeze.org/page.asp?id=428&iType=
Since a number of you asked if it would be a be a good idea to write to the FSA, we decided to let you all know the best thing to do.
Writing to the FSA is unlikely to have any impact.
However, it would be very useful to write to politicians about the way the project is being handled and the waste of taxpayers' money at a time when cuts are being made elsewhere.
If urgent action is taken it may be possible to stop any contractual developments being locked in, so please act soon.
So, please write to your MP, MSP, MLA or MA (you can find them at www.writetothem.com) and:
- object strongly to the use of taxpayers' money to conduct a pro-GM PR exercise to try (again) to convince people to like GM foo and crops.
- ask your politician to formally ask Ministers and the FSA to explain what is happening and how the cost is justified
- copy or send a link to Dr Wallace's resignation letter (see http://www.genewatch.org/uploads/f03c6d66a9b354535738483c1c3d49e4/resignation.doc
- you could also refer to the other attention the issue has received:
GM Freeze press release at link above,
Story by the Ecologist http://www.theecologist.org/News/news_round_up/493786/fsa_accused_of_running_pr_exercise_for_gm_industry.html
Soil Association letter to FSA chief at http://www.soilassociation.org/News/NewsItem/tabid/91/smid/463/ArticleID/395/reftab/57/t/Helen-Wallace-resigns-from-FSA-s-steering-group-on-GM/Default.aspx
**It would be very helpful when doing this to send a copy to the FSA (so they know it is happening)
http://www.food.gov.uk/aboutus/contactus/ and to the newspaper of your choice (as how they report the "dialogue" as/if it proceeds will be important).**
I am happy to answer any questions you may have. Feel free to send this action on to others.
Thank you for helping with this important issue,
2.What to do if you contact the FSA
Comment from Ian Panton
You should let us know if:
- you believe we have not met any of our statutory obligations
- we have failed to live up to our own service standards or our statement of general objectives and practices, for example if there have been undue delays in replying to correspondence
- you believe that we have not acted properly or followed the right procedures, for example in the conduct of public consultations, or in our procurement of goods and services
- you have not been able to access our information or other services because they are not available in a suitable language or format
- the conduct of any of our staff or Board members has fallen short of your expectations.
If you are dissatisfied with any decision or policy that the Food Standards Agency has made, please contact us so we can explain how that decision or policy was reached. If, after receiving our explanation, you believe you have grounds for a complaint, you should follow our complaints procedure.
plus a good list of emails is at:
BUT if people write to Jeff Rooker [Chair of the FSA] then the best contacts are:
Private Office of the Chair and Deputy Chair
Private Secretary to the Chair:
tel: 020 7276 8625
Private Secretary to the Deputy Chair:
tel: 020 7276 8626
All the best