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From the Desk of Senator Kemp Hannon: October 9, 2009

Health Fair in Your Backyard

Senator Kemp Hannon is sponsoring his eighth annual Health Fair and Awareness Day on Thursday, Oct. 29 from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. at the David S. Mack Sports Complex at Hofstra University in Uniondale on the north side of campus.

Flu shots, various health screenings and the health information you want to know will all be available as over 90 health providers and health specialists gather at one venue to address your every concern.

Free flu shots will be dispensed in cooperation with Nassau University Medical Center to persons 60 years or older. If you live in Senator Hannon’s district, call 739-1700 on any Wednesday or Thursday beginning Oct. 7 to reserve an appointment.

Also, please help our community by bringing non-perishable food items for the Mary Brennan INN and Island Harvest charities to the fair. Senator Hannon’s staff will deliver all of the items to the charities. Thank you for your help!

Important Fire Safety Tips for Parents and Kids

A house fire can occur at any time, so what’s your family’s game plan? It’s easy to hope for the best, but if a fire were to start in your home, do your children immediately know what they should do?

During October, Fire Prevention Month, Senator Kemp Hannon encourages parents not only to speak to their kids about fire safety, but to have practice fire drills as well.

“Every family is different and every home is different. That’s why it’s crucial for parents to develop a specific plan that works for the layout of their home and family,” Senator Hannon said. “Kids need to practice their family’s fire escape plan so they are confident in case of a real emergency. During a house fire, there’s no time to second-guess what you should do.”

The senator asks parents to review the following safety measures in order to ensure the safety of their loved ones. The seven fire prevention steps families need to know:

• Practice drills should be held at least twice a year. Hold family drills at night with all the lights out and door closed.

• Name one family member as the drill leader. The drill leader is responsible for sounding an alarm to start the drill and for the timing of the drill.

• Each family member should pretend the door is warm and practice opening it carefully.

• Everyone should pretend there is smoke and proceed to crawl following the normal exit route.

• Once outside, everyone should go to the designated meeting place. The drill leader should take a roll count. If this were a real fire, one person would use the neighbor’s phone to call the fire department.

• Conduct a second drill having family members follow alternate exit routes

Hannon Proposes Bill to Provide ‘One-Stop Shopping’ For H1N1 Info

Senator Kemp Hannon is proposing a bill calling for the state to consolidate all of the pertinent information regarding the H1N1 flu onto one online forum to ensure accuracy and convenience for New Yorkers.

“We need to provide information for New Yorkers in a clear and coherent manner that is readily accessible,” Senator Hannon said. “The current information posted on websites is difficult to find, organized in a confusing fashion and scattered over different governmental agencies and, within the agencies, over different web pages.”

Senator Hannon’s proposed legislation will provide New Yorkers with the confidence of knowing that their questions regarding the H1N1 flu can be answered quickly and accurately by visiting one website. “Concerned parents should not be burdened with determining which specific information applies to their children and how to efficiently find that information,” Hannon said. “I recommend that we work together. For example, the Department of Health and Department of Education should cross-reference each other prior to posting H1N1 information.”

In his letter sent to Governor Paterson, Health Commissioner Daines and Education Interim Commissioner Huxley on Sept. 3, Senator Hannon conveyed the urgency of providing one informational H1N1 flu website for the benefit of all New Yorkers.  

“We must act now to provide New Yorkers with easily accessible and clear information. We need to reassure New Yorkers that there is no need to read between the lines and conduct their own research to discover the answers to their questions,” Hannon said.

For more information about the New York State Senate and to sign up for email updates, visit Senator Hannon’s website,