In recognition of Multiple Sclerosis Awareness Month

Mr. Silver:   I also rise today on behalf of the Liberal caucus and the Official Opposition to join with my colleagues in the Legislature today to recognize Multiple Sclerosis Awareness Month. MS has historically been referred to as the unknown disease. If a newly diagnosed patient were to ask their physician what would be the progress of their disease, more often than not the answer would be, “We don’t know.” A patient could have one clinical diagnostic incident and fully recover, as is common in relapsing-remitting MS, or a patient could be clinically diagnosed and begin a course of treatments that may or may not slow the progressive debilitating disease.

Unfortunately, MS is very complex and affects everyone differently. As with many matters involving the human brain, even with the best research, science does not have all the answers. There is much we still do not know about MS. We do not know precisely how many Yukoners live with the disease or why it’s so common among the non-indigenous northern populations. We also do not know why almost three times as many women as men are affected. Although this disease has been around for many years, there is no known cure and there is no known cause. As individuals, we can lace up for those we love and join the MS walk. The 2014 Whitehorse walk will be held at noon on May 31 at Copper Ridge Place. Every step matters for those with MS.

Today I wear this carnation on my lapel as a symbol of hope in the quest to find the cure. The MS carnation campaign raises awareness of this debilitating disease. Carnations are sold over the Mother’s Day weekend because so many women — our mothers and our daughters — fight this disease.

I would like to thank the MS Society of Canada and Yukon’s local division for the work that they do, as well as the volunteers who help organize the activities for MS Awareness Month for their countless hours and the support that they provide for those living with multiple sclerosis.