The Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics has repeatedly stated that it is willing to engage in dialogue on issues that are of concern to its members. Dietitians for Professional Integrity co-founder Lauri Boone, RD, has had a much different experience.
Her account is important because it echoes those of many others who have expressed their concerns to AND and are still awaiting a response. This lack of acknowledgment is disappointing, disrespectful, and demoralizing.
Lauri’s account follows:
“As a member of AND, colleagues have asked me if I have contacted AND with my concerns. I have and I’ve failed to receive responses.
On March 6th, 2013, I emailed corporate relations at AND to share my statement of concern, ask if AND will consider holding a forum to discuss sponsorships, and if there are plans to consider sponsorship reform based on member concerns. I did not receive a response from AND.
A week later, on March 13th, I followed up via email with both corporate relations and membership. Corporate relations referred me to a webpage titled “truth and transparency” to address my concerns, and added that a session on the “value of public/private partnerships” would be held this fall. In a follow-up email, I asked to clarify if the session allow concerned members to speak (or just informational), and if AND supports their current sponsorship policies, or are open to change based on member concerns. I have not received a response from AND.
On April 19th, I emailed my New York State dietetic association to let them know that I would not be attending the state meeting after reviewing the list of sponsors. I told them that I had contacted AND to express my concerns and stated that “I hope positive and proactive dialogue begins to open up around this matter, and if there is anything I can do outside of addressing my concerns to AND and my state association, please let me know. I am happy to get involved in any way I can.” I have not received a response from my state association.
As an AND member, this lack of dialogue has been disappointing. I still remain hopeful for a time when AND begins to communicate with members to address their concerns and work together.”