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Murkowski Resolution Designating Fetal Alcohol Spectrum Disorders Day Passes Senate

WASHINGTON, D.C. - The United States Senate has passed a resolution introduced by U.S. Sen. Lisa Murkowski, R-Alaska, designating September 9, 2010, as "National Fetal Alcohol Spectrum Disorders Awareness Day." The resolution passed the Senate by unanimous consent on Thursday evening.

Fetal alcohol spectrum disorders are the leading cause of cognitive disability in the United States and are 100 percent preventable. They are also a factor in numerous social disorders including learning disabilities and other mental illnesses. Fetal alcohol spectrum disorders cost the United States $6 billion in 2007 and it is estimated that individuals with fetal alcohol syndrome will cost U.S. taxpayers between $860,000 and $4 million during their lifetime for care.

"Fetal alcohol spectrum disorders are a tragic consequence of drinking alcohol during pregnancy," Murkowski said. "What is perhaps most tragic about these disorders is that they are completely avoidable. I call on all Americans to join me in raising awareness about these disorders and stop them from happening."

Murkowski's resolution calls on Americans to observe the day with activities promoting awareness of the effects of prenatal exposure to alcohol. 

The resolution is cosponsored by U.S. Sens. Evan Bayh of Indiana; Bob Bennett and Orrin Hatch of Utah; Byron Dorgan of North Dakota; Tim Johnson of South Dakota; Patty Murray of Washington and Arlen Specter of Pennsylvania.

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