Community pulls together to make “World No Tobacco Day” a success
I am writing to thank the Gloversville Middle School students and staff, Gloversville Mayor Dayton King, and the Gloversville Police Department for participating in a rally to celebrate “World No Tobacco Day 2012” [May 31] and to tell the tobacco industry to stop marketing their products to kids.
World No Tobacco Day is a yearly celebration that informs the public about the dangers of using tobacco, the business practices of tobacco companies, what the World Health Organization is doing to fight the tobacco epidemic, and what people around the world can do to claim their right to health and healthy living and to protect future generations.
The students were educated about how the tobacco industry sees children as being “replacement smokers” for the 1,200 Americans that die every day from a tobacco-related illness, especially in communities like Gloversville. They then put their hands in front of their eyes to say, “We’ve had enough” tobacco marketing in stores!
Mayor King graciously spoke to the students about how using tobacco can make a negative impact on their lives and that he supports the efforts of the Reality Check program to protect kids from being influenced by the tobacco industry’s marketing tactics.
The tobacco industry spends an average of $1.1 million a day here in New York to market their deadly products to youth. The bulk of their advertising is located in retail locations, where their displays and signs are made to make kids think that using tobacco is completely normal, even though only 15.5 percent of adults smoke in New York state.
For more information about tobacco advertising in retail locations, go to www.realitycheckhfm.com or www.tobaccofreekids.org.
The writer is program coordinator for Reality Check HFM.