Report: Minnesota should step up its commitment to helping adults quit, keeping youth from smoking

St. Paul, MN (Dec. 14, 2016) – Minnesotans for a Smoke-Free Generation, a coalition of Minnesota’s leading health organizations, reacted to findings from a national report that Minnesota will spend only $22 million (from state and private sources) this year on tobacco prevention and cessation programs – less than 42 percent of the recommended amount by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). By comparison, the tobacco industry spends more than $100 million marketing their products in the state each year.

“Tobacco prevention programs and policies have helped Minnesota reach record low smoking rates for adults and kids,” said Molly Moilanen, Director of Public Affairs for ClearWay Minnesota and Co-Chair of Minnesotans for a Smoke-Free Generation. “But we must do more. We are up against a tobacco industry whose economic future depends on replacement smokers – making our kids their next generation of profits.”

Today’s report, titled “Broken Promises to Our Children: A State-by-State Look at the 1998 State Tobacco Settlement 18 Years Later,” was released by the Campaign for Tobacco-Free Kids, American Heart Association, American Cancer Society Cancer Action Network, American Lung Association, the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation, Americans for Nonsmokers’ Rights and Truth Initiative. Full text of the report and Minnesota-specific information can be found at tfk.org/statereport

“Funding sources for tobacco prevention are declining in Minnesota,” Moilanen said. “It’s time for lawmakers to commit to protecting our kids. Continuing to pass bold policies and providing adequate resources to help people quit and prevent kids from starting will help end smoking in our state.”

ABOUT MINNESOTANS FOR A SMOKE-FREE GENERATION

Minnesotans for a Smoke-Free Generation is a coalition of Minnesota organizations that share a common goal of saving Minnesota youth from a lifetime of addiction to tobacco. The coalition supports policies that reduce youth smoking, including keeping tobacco prices high, raising the tobacco sale age to 21, limiting access to candy-, fruit- and menthol-flavored tobacco and funding future tobacco control programs. 

Partners include: A Healthier Southwest, African American Leadership Forum, Allina Health, American Cancer Society Cancer Action Network, American Heart Association, American Lung Association in Minnesota, Apple Tree Dental, Association for Nonsmokers – Minnesota, Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Minnesota, CentraCare Health, Children’s Defense Fund-Minnesota, Children’s Hospitals and Clinics of Minnesota, ClearWay MinnesotaSM, Comunidades Latinos Unidas En Servicio – CLUES, Essentia Health, Four Corners Partnership, Gillette Children’s Specialty Healthcare, HealthEast, HealthPartners, Hennepin County Medical Center, Hope Dental Clinic, Indigenous Peoples Task Force, ISAIAH, LAAMPP Institute, Lake Region Healthcare, Lincoln Park Children and Families Collaborative, Local Public Health Association of Minnesota, March of Dimes, Mayo Clinic, Medica, Minnesota Academy of Family Physicians, Minnesota Association of Community Health Centers, Minnesota Cancer Alliance, Minnesota Chapter of the American Academy of Pediatrics, Minnesota Council of Health Plans, Minnesota Hospital Association, Minnesota Medical Association, Minnesota Oral Health Coalition, Minnesota Public Health Association, Model Cities of St. Paul, Inc., North Memorial Health Care, NorthPoint Health and Wellness Center, PartnerSHIP 4 Health, Perham Health, Rainbow Health Initiative, SEIU Healthcare Minnesota, Tobacco Free Alliance and Twin Cities Medical Society. 

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    Minnesotans for a Smoke-Free Generation is a coalition of Minnesota organizations that share a common goal of saving Minnesota youth from a lifetime of addiction to tobacco. Each year in Minnesota tobacco use is responsible for more than 6,300 deaths and more than $3 billion in preventable health care costs and 95 percent of adult smokers started before the age of 21. The coalition supports policies that reduce youth smoking, including keeping tobacco prices high, raising the tobacco sale age to 21, limiting access to candy-, fruit- and menthol-flavored tobacco and funding future tobacco prevention programs.

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