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The American Cancer Society Cancer Action Network says there are 6 cancer cases per week in Genesee County – that’s 350 a year.

Despite the number of organizations supporting cancer awareness and research, having support of elected officials is important, according to Hillary Clarke -- director of federal government relations for The American Cancer Society Cancer Action Network.

“Elected officials are actually a very important partner in the fight against cancer, and that’s something a lot of people don’t realize," Clarke said. "We talk a lot about research and treatment, but with a sweep of a pen, legislators across the country are making great strides in the fight against cancer.”

Clarke says that politicians can allocate funding for cancer research, tobacco-control programs, or cancer screening programs for the uninsured.

 “We’re here to send the message that cancer isn’t just fought in the doctor’s office, but it’s also fought in our nation’s capital and in legislatures across the country," Clarke said. "Whether it be preventing, detecting, or treating appropriately, there’s a role for elected officials at every phase in the continuum.”

 That’s why the Cancer Votes campaign is traveling to key congressional elections – like the 27th District race right here featuring Kathy Hochul and Chris Collins. Clarke says they aren’t saying enough about how they plan to support cancer patients and research. The van is traversing the state and collecting signatures.

To support Cancer Votes, or see a presidential voter guide, visit their website (


On Thursday afternoon Clarke said that neither the Hochul nor the Collins campaign had responded to the ACS questionnaire prior to yesterday’s Cancer Votes event in Batavia. By the end of the day, following media inquiries, Hochul completed the questionnaire and Collins had issued a brief statement supporting cancer research.

The Collins statement: "As the brother of a cancer survivor, Chris Collins knows how important it is to support cancer research. Chris also recognizes how important it is to make sure no government bureaucracy stops doctors from giving patients like Chris' sister the treatment they need to stay healthy. We need to be sure that doctors, not government bureaucrats determine how best to care for patients. We must also promise to protect medicare for our seniors so they continue to receive the access to affordable care they paid for their entire lives.

The completed Hochul questionaire HERE: 

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