By the President of the United States of America
Good vision, like good health generally, contributes much to the enjoyment of life. Our ability to see affects how we learn, how we work and play, how we relate to others, .and how well we are able to function in an increasingly complex society. Yet most people take good eyesight for granted. Just as we have come to recognize the need to take a more active role in maintaining the health of our bodies through diet and exercise, we should also take time to consider what can be done to take care of our eyes and to protect our vision. With proper care and attention, many of the serious eye problems that affect both young and old can be prevented.
Prevention of eye disease begins even before birth with adequate nutrition and prenatal care for the mother. During early childhood and later in life, periodic eye examinations can reveal certain potentially blinding eye conditions early enough to permit successful treatment. This is particularly true in families where there is a history of glaucoma or in people who have diabetes. With professional eye care, it is even possible to restore sight to some people who are already blind or to help those with partial sight make the most of their remaining vision.
In addition to obtaining professional eye care when needed, each of us must take responsibility for protecting our eyes from injury. Protective eyeglasses or safety goggles should be worn in hazardous situations at work and while participating in many recreational activities. In the home, precautions should be taken to avoid injury to the eyes from household products, appliances, and cosmetics.
To increase awareness of the importance of good vision and of the ways in which we can help to preserve our eyesight, the Congress, by joint resolution approved December 30, 1963 (77 Stat. 629, 36 U.S.C. 169a), has requested the President to proclaim the first week of March of each year as Save Your Vision Week.
Now, THEREFORE, I, JIMMY CARTER, President of the United States of America, do hereby designate the week beginning March 2, 1980, as Save Your Vision Week. I urge all Americans to participate in the observance of this period by pausing to consider what they can do to take care of their eyes. I invite vision care professionals, the communications media, educators, and all public and private organizations that support sight conservation to participate in activities that will teach Americans about eye care and encourage them to take steps to preserve and make the most of their vision.
IN WITNESS WHEREOF, I have hereunto set my hand this twenty-eighth day of January, in the year of our Lord nineteen hundred eighty, and of the Independence of the United States of America the two hundred and fourth.
[Filed with the Office of the Federal Register, 3:55 p.m., January 28, 1980]