PORTLAND, Ore. (KTVZ) — A recent report from the Campaign for Tobacco-Free Kids ranked Oregon first in the nation in funding for tobacco prevention at levels recommended by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.
CTFK’s Jan. 13 report, “Broken Promises: A State-by-State Look at the 1998 Tobacco Settlement 23 Years Later,” found that Oregon, at 93.9 percent, and Alaska, at 89, 6%, are the only states to provide at least three-quarters of the CDC-recommended funding for prevention and smoking cessation programs. They are also among only 10 states – along with Utah, California, North Dakota, Oklahoma, Delaware, Wyoming, Hawaii and Maine – to provide more than half of the funding recommended by the CDC.
Voters in Oregon passed Ballot Measure 108 in November 2020. The ballot initiative raised tobacco taxes to increase funding for Oregon’s health plan and tobacco prevention activities that prevent commercial tobacco addiction and death, especially for communities of color and youth.
“The Oregon Health Authority (OHA) is thrilled and proud of this recognition of state leadership in funding tobacco prevention at the level recommended by the CDC,” said Rachael Banks, director of public health for the Oregon Health Authority. ‘OHA. “We deeply appreciate Oregon’s collective dedication to improving the health of our communities. We have been a national leader in tobacco prevention, but we still have a lot of work to do to ensure health equity.
To achieve the OHA’s goal of eliminating health inequities by 2030, Banks explained, the new funding will support community solutions to the suffering caused by systemic discrimination and targeting by the tobacco industry. communities of color and tribal communities. “We are boldly entering a new era, partnering with those most affected by the harms of tobacco to tackle the root causes of commercial addiction to tobacco,” she said.
While Oregon has made great strides toward improving health and reducing smoking, some communities continue to experience unfair health issues related to smoking and systemic discrimination, Banks said. The tobacco industry continues to introduce flavored tobacco products such as vaping and smokeless nicotine products that appeal to young people.
Additionally, the tobacco industry continues its decades-long practice of targeting African American and Black communities with menthol products by placing menthol marketing and discounts in Black communities and appropriating Afro culture. American in advertising. Menthol cigarettes are easier to start smoking and harder to quit than unflavored cigarettes. In Oregon, 25% of African Americans smoke compared to 18% of whites.
Matthew L. Myers, president of the Campaign for Tobacco-Free Kids, said while tobacco companies remain as relentless as ever in marketing their addictive and harmful products – including menthol cigarettes, flavored e-cigarettes and flavored cigars – it is essential that states step up their efforts to protect our children and help smokers quit.
“Oregon is a rare beacon of hope among states to really increase their funding for proven tobacco prevention and reversal programs,” Myers said. “Voters raised the state’s tobacco tax at the polls in 2020, and now we’re seeing the state use some of the new revenue to increase funding for programs that will help us end the stranglehold that Big Tobacco has been on this country for too long. The key next step is to end the sale of all flavored tobacco products — and we hope Oregon sets a great example there too, for other states to follow.
The majority of the new tobacco and nicotine prevention funding will be distributed to communities through grants to tribes and federally recognized Indigenous organizations, as well as an open funding opportunity for community organizations that can work with local public health authority smoking prevention programs. . Visit the grant application website, https://ohapublichealthfunding.org/en/, to see program activities eligible for funding. Grant applications can be submitted until January 31.
Everyone deserves a fair and equitable chance to be as healthy as possible – and that includes a life free of commercial tobacco addiction. OHA is committed to providing free assistance to anyone in Oregon. It’s no secret that times are tough, but you don’t have to quit alone. For free help, call 1-800-QUIT-NOW or visit https://smokefreeoregon.com/im-ready-to-quit/.