OSWEGO, NY – Tuesday, May 31, is World No Tobacco Day.
This year, the World Health Organization (WHO) and the Tobacco Free Network of Oswego County are teaming up to send a clear message to cigarette makers: We’ve Seen Enough!
According to the WHO, young women are a major target for the tobacco industry in its effort to recruit new users to replace those who will quit or die prematurely from tobacco-related diseases.
Tobacco use is the leading preventable cause of death and kills more than five million people every year, about 1.5 million of whom are women.
Many local women are using World No Tobacco Day as an opportunity to stand up to these giant, cancer-causing, corporations – letting them know they won’t allow tobacco companies to push them into a lifelong tobacco addiction.
Tobacco companies spend billions of dollars each year marketing their deadly products at the point of sale.
This is done by controlling dominant display space in retail stores and through in-store advertising.
Both are typically found around the cash register, sometimes referred to within the industry as the “goal post” because it is the one place in the store where everyone must go.
Tobacco companies invest a lot at these locations in creating power walls of large, visually appealing displays of products intended to attract the interest of customers.
“Tobacco companies use pretty colors and attacks on women’s self esteem to promote their products. They market their products in a way that make it appear as if women who use tobacco products are prettier, more mysterious and thinner,” said Abby Jenkins, program coordinator of the Tobacco Free Network of Oswego County. “Unless the community stands up to the tobacco industry and initiates a change, wearing a blindfold will be the only way for women to avoid this deadly influence.”
An online petition urging people to take a stand against in-store advertising has also been posted at TobaccoFreeNYS.org
The Tobacco Free Network of Oswego County along with the Oswego County Health Department and the Rural Health Network of Oswego County will be holding events throughout the summer months to promote healthy living for the women of Oswego County.
Events include a Mother’s Day pampering event at the Fulton YMCA on June 4 from 1 – 4 p.m., a fun and fitness event at the Oswego Relay For Life, held at the Oswego High School track on June 10 at 7:30 p.m., and the fun continues on July 23 at the Oswego Public Library with a scrapbooking event from 1 – 4 p.m.
Each event is free to the public and will include great information and giveaways.
For more information about the Tobacco Free Network of Oswego County or any of the upcoming events, please call (315) 343-2344 ext. 21 or go to www.tobaccofreeoswego.com
Information about quitting smoking is available by calling the toll-free New York State Smokers’ Quitline at 1-866-NY-QUITS (1-866-697-8487) and on the Quitline Web site at www.nysmokefree.com