4 Sep 2012

My mum took thalidomide

The German company that invented thalidomide has, after 50 years, apologised to thousands of people born with disabilities after their mothers took the drug. My mother was amongst those who took this drug in the heaviest doses and for a long period but I was amongst those who didn't end up with disabilities caused by the drug.

The drug was sold in the 1950s as a cure for morning sickness, was linked to birth defects and withdrawn in 1961; the year I was born.

Mr Stock, Gruenenthal's chief executive, issued his company's apology to the 10,000 or so who have been born with a range of disabilities caused by the drug. He unveiled a bronze statue symbolising a child born without limbs because of thalidomide. See BBC report here. Now it is time to seriously consider financial compensation - it is true some was paid but claims are still outstanding.

See also Stroud's Liberty Day here where the Stroud District access Group will be seeking to raise awareness about disability issues.

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