The Fresno region is showing signs of improvement when it comes to protecting our youth from the dangers of tobacco use but much more needs to be done.
Fresno and several surrounding communities were recognized for improving tobacco control and smoke-free policies in the American Lung Association’s latest State of Tobacco Control report. That’s a great start.
Community members should continue to work with local leaders to adopt strong policies including tobacco retail licensing ordinances, which work to keep tobacco products and e-cigarettes out of the hands of children.
Each year, 11,000 teens start using tobacco products in California and we should be doing all we can to bring that number down to zero.
We must also focus on making a difference in communities targeted by the tobacco industry’s deceptive marketing campaigns including communities of color and the LGBTQ community. Big Tobacco has long used menthol and other flavored tobacco products to get teens in these communities hooked for a lifetime of addiction.
Let’s work together and fight back against tobacco’s grip on public health in California.
Kim Davis, Visalia