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Tobacco Use Prevention Success Stories

Coalitions in Action: Florida Coalition Calls in the ‘SWAT Team’ to Combat Tobacco Use

Their community is rural— population 14,000— and predominantly low income— per capita income is $10,562, yet what Hamilton County, Fla. doesn’t have in financial resources, it does have in human capital, namely its youth. And these middle and high school youth are changing the norm around tobacco use in their county.

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Michigan Coalition Helps Local Schools Go Tobacco Free

Restaurants and businesses may have smoke-free policies but are your local schools smoke- or tobacco-free? As the Jackson County Substance Abuse Prevention Coalition (JCSAPC) in Michigan discovered, just because your state has a smoke-free law in place doesn’t mean all schools do. Just like many other states, Michigan has a smoke-free air law that prohibits smoking in restaurants, bars and businesses. However, in 2008, after reviewing all of Jackson County’s school districts’ handbooks and policies, the JCSAPC realized that something needed to be done to ensure that all schools had effective tobacco-free policies in place.

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Coalitions in Action: Massachusetts Youth Persuade Board of Health to Ban Tobacco Product Sales in Drugstores

Leaders from the Reading Coalition Against Substance Abuse in Massachusetts, persuaded their Board of Health to ban the sale of tobacco products in local pharmacies. The policy, which took effect in Reading last month, is in line with other communities in the country and in Massachusetts such as in neighboring Boston. Coalition Director, Erica McNamara, said that the project was completely youth-led, having been spearheaded by the coalition’s youth group, Youth Crew. From writing a mini-grant to fund the project to collecting data to presenting their findings to the Board of Health, the youth deserve the credit for the ban, she said.

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Coalitions in Action: Gwinnett County Drives Home Change to Mobilize their Community for Success

Gwinnett Coalition for Health and Human Services, a DFC grantee and CADCA member, developed a number of environmental strategies to reduce tobacco use, which helped prevent youth from smoking and allowed all Georgians to breathe easier. The coalition’s tobacco strategies were instrumental in leading their county, and, ultimately, the entire state of Georgia, to pass a Clean Indoor Air ordinance. The task was not an easy one to accomplish, considering Georgia has one of the lowest tax rates for cigarettes, unchanged for more than 20 years at 38 cents per pack.

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West Virginia Coalitions Launch Campaign to Combat Spit Tobacco Use

Coalitions and tobacco advocates across West Virginia joined forces last week to launch a new campaign that aims to cut down on spit tobacco use—a growing problem in West Virginia. The campaign, “Save Face: Stop Spit Tobacco,” utilizes a century-old advertising strategy used by tobacco companies to market their products by painting barns in rural areas. Spit tobacco is made from a mixture of tobacco, nicotine, sweeteners, abrasives, salts and contains over 3,000 chemicals, including about 28 known carcinogens. The practice of chewing tobacco is a growing trend in West Virginia, particularly among young people. In fact, West Virginia is rated as #1 in the nation for spit tobacco use among men, #2 in the nation for smoking during pregnancy and #3 in the nation for adult smoking prevalence.

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