American Cancer Society officials call for Congress to take action on tobacco issues
Along with advice for smokers, the American Cancer Society's Cancer Action Network (ACS CAN) urged the nation's legislators to know and enforce tobacco control policies this year.
“Congress should reject proposed cuts to the Center for Disease Control and Prevention’s (CDC) Office of Smoking and Health, which conducts national tobacco control efforts that increase quit attempts across the country," ACS CAN President Chris Hansen said. "The CDC’s enormously successful ‘Tips from Former Smokers’ campaign resulted in an estimated 1.6 million smokers making a quit attempt and more than 100,000 of them quitting for good. Simply put, this program works, and inadequate funding will put its future success at reducing tobacco use in jeopardy."
ACS CAN officials have also been vocal about their desire to see Congress pass the Trans-Pacific Partnership, a trade agreement that includes tobacco measures.
"The important provision would prevent the tobacco industry from using this trade agreement to bring lawsuits intended to block important tobacco control policies that reduce deadly addiction and prevent the next generation from getting hooked," Hansen said. “Finally, ACS CAN calls on the Obama administration to release the long-overdue FDA deeming rule, asserting its authority to regulate all tobacco products, especially increasingly popular tobacco products such as cigars, electronic cigarettes and hookah. Every day that goes by without regulation, tobacco companies take full advantage of their opportunity to exploit lack of regulations by marketing their products to young consumers who are using these tobacco products at dramatically increased rates."
Hansen said 42 million adults in the U.S. are regular tobacco users, and that, according to the U.S. Surgeon General, the nation sees more than 480,000 smoking-related deaths each year.
“Congress and the administration should prioritize the health of our country by funding tobacco control programs and issuing important regulations that encourage smokers to quit and prevent the next generation from getting addicted in the first place,” Hansen said.
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