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

Gilchrist County Tobacco Prevention Newsletter

Volume 8, Issue 1 / January-March, 2014
Gilchrist County Teens Tell Big Tobacco:
We are Not "Replacements"!

March 19, 2014

     The tobacco industry is losing customers. Not only are more smokers quitting, every day an estimated 1,315 people in the United States die because of smoking.
     In response, the tobacco industry targets a new generation of potential nicotine addicts, which they call “replacement smokers.” A 1984 internal document from R.J. Reynolds’, the makers of Camel, stated: “Younger adult smokers are the only source of replacement smokers… If younger adults turn away from smoking, the industry must decline, just as a population which does not give birth will eventually dwindle.”
     On Kick Butts Day, Students Working Against Tobacco (SWAT) Clubs throughout Florida spoke up and took action to let Big Tobacco know they will be not replacements. Kick Butts Day, which this year was celebrated on March 19, is the Campaign for Tobacco-Free Kids national day of activism that empowers youth to fight back against Big Tobacco.
     Gilchrist County SWAT set up a booth at the Suwannee River Youth Fair to let area youth know that tobacco companies are targeting them as the next generation of tobacco users by adding sweet flavors to mask the dangers of their products.
The Importance of Creating Tobacco-Free Campuses
Tracy DeCubellis, M.S., March 10, 2014

     It is no secret that tobacco use is harmful to human health. Even elementary age children I speak with tell me that smoking or dipping is a bad habit, or that it will hurt people.  Despite the fact that even our youngest citizens know that using tobacco is harmful, it is still a practice that occurs even during work hours.  According to the Center for Disease Control (CDC), tobacco use in the workplace actually accounts for the most lost worker productivity compared to other causes such as family emergencies or alcohol abuse. Since most smokers want to quit, up to 70% according to the CDC, workplaces that create a smoke-free campus policy could actually be doing their employees a favor in helping them become tobacco-free.
     Businesses that create tobacco-free campus policies not only protect the health and well-being of non-smoking employees and customers, patients, or clients, but they also create pro-health social norms.  This type of campus wide policy may actually go a long way to encourage employees who use tobacco to quit the habit, especially if the campus tobacco-free policy includes cessation help for those who currently smoke or use smokeless tobacco products.
     In Gilchrist County, the Tobacco Free Partnership has been working with businesses and community organizations to assist them with tobacco-free campus policies. Last fall, the Gilchrist County Health Department instituted a smoke-free and e-cigarette policy for their campus. This month, Grace Ministries in Bell has been working with the Tobacco Free Partnership to create a smoke-free and e-cigarette free policy at their ranch, and at their thrift store in Bell as well. Businesses and community organizations who take this step are also impacting the community by creating new social norms, suggesting that being tobacco-free is the norm, even in the workplace.
The Quit Doc Research and Education Foundation SmokeScreeners Announce The 2013 “Phlegmmy Awards” Identifying the Smokiest Films of the Year!

     In conjunction with the annual Academy Awards, The SmokeScreeners have issued their annual “Phlegmmy Awards”, the list of the ten films with most tobacco use as rated by students, parents, and educators.  The Hobbit: The Desolation of Smaug tops this year’s list as the Worst Movie of 2013.
     “The Hobbit: The Desolation of Smaug is a PG-13 rated fantasy film that showed two of the film’s stars smoking in several scenes,” said Dr. Barry Hummel, a Pediatrician and youth tobacco prevention advocate.  “The previous installment has significantly more smoking, and actually won the Phlegmmy Award last year.  Because of its PG-13 rating, the film drew large numbers of families to the theater.  Given all we know about the impact of scenes of movie smoking on the initiation of youth tobacco use, such scenes are unnecessary in a fantasy film such as this.”
     Dr. Hummel also pointed out the importance of such tobacco use in movies.  “The Hobbit has sold over $256 million in tickets in the United States alone.  If we assume the average ticket price is $8.00, then over 32 million Americans have seen the movie.  That means the five smoking incidents in The Hobbit have provided 160 million tobacco impressions… not bad marketing for an industry that has few remaining advertising options.  This use of tobacco by movie characters in a fantasy setting continues to glamorize... and normalize... tobacco use, especially among our youth.”
Florida State Campus Becomes Tobacco- Free in 2014
by Alexander Browning

     Students on campus may breathe a little easier in January. Florida State University’s campus will be 100 percent tobacco free starting Jan. 1, 2014. The new policy will prohibit the use of all tobacco products on university-owned property or property managed by FSU. All students, faculty, staff and visitors on campus will be asked to honor the university’s commitment to a healthier campus.
     FSU’s Board of Trustees passed the tobacco ban last March as a part of an initiative to become a top 25 public university. With the policy, FSU joins over 20 universities in Florida that already have tobacco-free campuses, including the University of Miami, the University of Florida and the University of Central Florida.
     Florida’s Department of Health encourages tobacco-free college campuses throughout the state with their Tobacco Free Florida initiative. According to the Department of Health, over 1,000 colleges and universities have 100 percent smoke-free campuses in the United States.
FDA Issues First Orders to Stop the Sale and Distribution of Tobacco Products
Media Inquiries: Jenny Haliski, 301-796-0776

     The U.S. Food and Drug Administration issued orders today to stop the further sale and distribution of four tobacco products currently on the market. The action marks the first time the FDA has used its authority under the Family Smoking Prevention and Tobacco Control Act to order a manufacturer of currently available tobacco products to stop selling and distributing them.
     The products – Sutra Bidis Red, Sutra Bidis Menthol, Sutra Bidis Red Cone, and Sutra Bidis Menthol Cone – were found to be not substantially equivalent to tobacco products commercially marketed as of February 15, 2007, also known as predicate products. This means they can no longer be sold or distributed in interstate commerce or imported into the United States.
     Bidis are thin, hand-rolled cigarettes filled with tobacco and wrapped in leaves from a tendu tree that are tied with string. The manufacturer, Jash International, did not meet the requirements of the Tobacco Control Act to be able to continue selling these products.
Proposed Florida Law Would Ban Sale of E-Cigarettes to Minors
By Kathleen McGrory

     TALLAHASSEE -- As electronic cigarettes become increasingly trendy, state lawmakers are taking steps to keep the devices out of teenagers’ hands.
     On Thursday, a Senate panel approved a proposal that would ban the sale of e-cigarettes to minors.
     “We don’t allow minors to buy cigarettes,” Sen. Lizbeth Benacquisto, R-Fort Myers, said. “We should certainly not allow minors to buy these products, as well.”
     Senate Bill 224 had already won the unanimous support of two other committees. It could likely be among the first proposals heard on the Senate floor when the legislative session begins March 4.
     The House version, sponsored by Republican Reps. Frank Artiles of Miami and Doc Renuart of Ponte Vedra Beach, won the support of its first committee earlier this week. It, too, is on a fast track.
     The movement comes as South Florida municipalities, school districts and universities grapple with regulating the devices.

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Senators Look For E-Cigarette Marketing Limits
Associated Press, Published: Feb. 26, 2014

     RICHMOND, Va. — Several U.S. senators on Wednesday introduced a bill that would curb electronic cigarette marketing while the fast-growing industry awaits regulation by the Food and Drug Administration.
     The bill is co-sponsored by California Sen. Barbara Boxer, Iowa Sen. Tom Harkin, both Democrats, and others. It would ban marketing to children based on standards set by the Federal Trade Commission and allow the agency to work with state attorneys general to enforce the ban on advertising. The battery-powered devices heat a liquid nicotine solution and create vapor that’s inhaled.
     Companies vying for a stake in the electronic cigarette business are reviving the decades-old marketing tactics the tobacco industry used to hook generations of Americans on regular smokes. Those tactics, such as running TV commercials and sponsoring race cars and other events, are raising worries that e-cigarette makers could tempt young people to take up something that could prove addictive.
Kicking The Habit: CVS To Stop Selling Tobacco
Matthew Herper, Forbes Staff

     CVS, the largest pharmacy chain in the United States, will stop selling cigarettes and other tobacco products in all of its 7,600 stores by October 1, its parent company CVS Caremark announced this morning. It is the first time any drugstore has ever dropped this deadly cash cow, and it is part of a major shift in direction for the drugstore giant.
     “We’ve got 26,000 pharmacists and nurse practitioners who are helping millions of patients each and every day,” said Larry Merlo, the chief executive of CVS Caremark. “They manage conditions like high blood pressure, high cholesterol, and diabetes — all conditions that are worsened by smoking. We’ve come to the decision that cigarettes have no place in an environment where healthcare is being delivered.”
     The decision gained immediate praise from the American Medical Association, the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation, and the American Cancer Society . “Over time, we think lives will be saved by this,” says Cancer Society President John Seffrin. But the public-health-mindedness will cost CVS billions – literally. The company says $2 billion in sales will be shaved off its $125 billion top line.
A New Strategy in the Fight to Reduce Smoking
By Geoffrey Cowley

     Most public-health controversies follow a standard political script. The left fights to protect us from toxic corporate interests (Big Tobacco, Big Sugar and the like), while the right fights to protect us from Nanny State intrusions on individual freedom. But some health threats are clear enough to bridge the divide. Smoking may be one of them.
    This week two Western states—bluish Colorado and deep-red Utah—embraced a strategy straight out of the People’s Republic of New York City. Lawmakers in both states voted up bipartisan proposals to raise the legal smoking age to 21. If these bills become law, they could open a new frontier in the national effort to shield teens from a demonstrably lethal addiction.
     Most states allow retailers to sell tobacco to anyone 18 or older. But four states (Alabama, Alaska, New Jersey and Utah) have raised the legal age to 19, and three local governments (New York City, Needham, Mass., and Hawaii County, Hawaii) have pushed it to 21.
Read Dr. Barry Hummel's Blog
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