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Tobacco Free Partnership of Gilchrist County
219 N. Main St., PO Box 75
Trenton, FL  32693

Gilchrist County Tobacco Prevention Newsletter

Volume 6, Issue 1 / January - March, 2013

A Busy Month Draws to a Close for Gilchrist County SWAT 

March 20, 2013 
 
     March has been a busy month for Gilchrist County SWAT. 
     At the beginning of the month, SWAT youth participated in a regional training event that brought youth together from North East Florida to discuss the issue of candy flavored tobacco. The regional event was held to help SWAT youth prepare for Kick Butts Day events around the state. Kick Butts Day is a national observance held by youth around the entire country to bring focus in their local communities about the ways tobacco companies intentionally target young people through adding candy flavoring to products, creating products that mimic candy, and through point-of-purchase advertising.
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SWAT is Making a Difference in Gilchrist County and Throughout the State of Florida

Students Working Against Tobacco clubs are established to give young people in Gilchrist County the opportunity to speak out in the community to let people know the ways in which tobacco companies target them and their friends to become replacement customers for the 430,000 people who die from tobacco related illness each year.  SWAT youth take this message seriously since approximately 90% of all smokers report that they started smoking before the age of 18.  These youth are dedicated to educating and advocating for policies that will help other youth stay tobacco-free for life.
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How Big Tobacco Got its Way in The Florida Legislature
By Matt Dixon
     TALLAHASSEE - It was February 2009, and things were looking good for the tobacco industry.
     “There are an estimated 60 million adult consumers participating in the total tobacco space in the United States,” said Michael Szymanczyk, CEO and chairman of the Altria Group, one of the world’s largest tobacco companies. “These adult consumers spent an estimated $80 billion on tobacco products at retail in 2008, an amount that has been increasing over the past few years.”
     His message during a conference at the posh Boca Raton Club and Resort was in the industry’s public statements and filings with regulatory authorities. It’s not what was being told to Florida lawmakers... Read More



'Addictive' Cigarette Smoking Games On Smartphones Target Kids
by Michaeleen Doucleff
     You can do just about anything with your phone these days. Take an electrocardiogram. Confess your sins. Even smoke a cigarette
     Yup, you read that correctly. Android and Apple offer apps that let you light and smoke a virtual cigarette. You simply blow into the microphone, or onto the screen, and an image of a cigarette glows red and "burns."
     Some apps time how long it takes to puff the whole fag, while others have a virtual ashtray that pops up messages like, "Would be even better with a beer in your hand!"... Read More
Sarasota County Can't Ban Smoking, Says its Attorney
By Jeremy Wallace
     SARASOTA COUNTY - All those “No Smoking” signs at county beaches and parks are flat-out wrong, it turns out.
     Sarasota County discovered Tuesday that it is powerless to stop smoking at public beaches, parks, youth sports fields or even in front of public libraries despite years of passing laws to the contrary.
     County attorney Stephen E. DeMarsh told county commissioners that the nearly five-year-old law banning smoking on public beaches is likely unenforceable, as is the roughly $100 fine that can come with each violation. Dozens of other smoking bans passed by local governments around Florida also could be in jeopardy... Read More


Senate Democrats go after tobacco tax loophole to increase revenue
By Ramsey Cox
     A group of Democratic senators introduced a bill on January 31, 2013, that would close tax loopholes for tobacco companies, generating $3.6 billion in revenue over 10 years.
     Democratic Sens. Dick Durbin (Ill.), Frank Lautenberg (N.J.) and Richard Blumenthal (Conn.) introduced the Tobacco Tax Equity Act, S. 194, which would close tax loopholes that allow tobacco companies to avoid the federal cigarette and roll-your-own tobacco tax, by making taxes on pipe tobacco equivalent to cigarette tobacco.
     “The current loopholes in the taxes on tobacco products encourage the use of products like pipe tobacco, smokeless tobacco, and 'nicotine candies' as a cheap source of tobacco, particularly among young people,” Durbin said... Read More

Graphic Cigarette Labels Can Influence Smokers Who Know Less About Health
By Join Together Staff
     Graphic cigarette warning labels that show the health consequences of smoking can influence a wide range of racial, ethnic and socioeconomic groups, a new study concludes.
     The study included more than 3,300 smokers, MedicalXpress reports. Researchers viewed graphic cigarette warnings or text-only warnings, and reported their reactions. The warning labels with pictures had a greater impact compared with the text-only warnings, the findings suggest. This was true regardless of participants’ race, ethnicity, education or income... Read More


Opinion:  E-Cigarette Makers Want to Have it Both Ways
By Stanton Glantz, Ph.D.
     Several of my colleagues and I submitted a public comment to the FDA docket regarding a “Report to Congress on Innovative Products and Treatments for Tobacco Dependence.” 
     We commented on the fact that at least two e-cigarette companies, Sottera, Inc., which promotes the e-cigarette brand NJOY, and VMR Products LLC, which promotes the e-cigarette brand V2Cigs, along with the e-cigarette industry’s trade association, Smokefree Alternatives Trade Association (SFATA), directed their consumers to provide public comment to this docket on “treatments for nicotine dependence” in direct e-mails to consumers and on their websites. The companies’ action was important because Sottera, Inc. had successfully sued the FDA to stop the agency from regulating e-cigarettes on the grounds that they were not therapeutic drugs and/or devices... Read More
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