by Sasha Nimmo

#MillionsMissing is a global day of protest for the millions missing from work, life, school, and families because of the devastating neuroimmune illness ME and chronic fatigue syndrome, created by #MEAction.

Share the #MillionsMissing fact sheet The Facts: M.E. in Australia.

The Melbourne event is taking place this Wednesday 25 May from 12-2pm on the lawns of Melbourne’s State Library of Victoria, Australia.

#MillionsMissing Melbourne will join protests in the US, UK and Canada on 25 May. On display will be hundreds of patients’ shoes as a symbolic and poignant statement of those people missing from life and too ill to protest. Across the world, patients too ill to attend protests will simultaneously take part in a huge virtual protest online.

In Australia, up to 240,000 people have the illness and costs to the community are estimated at 4 billion per annum. Of this group 25% are so ill they have been bedridden and housebound for years, sometimes decades. Despite this, in 2015, the Australian National Health and Medical Research Council allocated a tiny fraction of research funding in contrast to other similarly disabling, but far less prevalent illnesses like Multiple Sclerosis ($9,000,000) and HIV/AIDS ($14,900,000).

We hope that this global day of action will galvanise support and see the disease receive appropriate medical attention and biomedical research funding.

Are you going? RSVP and print out some fact sheets to take with you. Participating online? Share the factsheet The Facts: M.E. in Australia, use the  hashtag and consider sending a letter to a politician or the National Medical Health Research Council to ask them to fund biomedical research.

Visit millionsmissing.meaction.net for more.