World No Tobacco Day 2013

(May 30, 2013)

Every year nearly six million people die as a result of tobacco use – 443,000 in the U.S. alone. That’s why the American Lung Association joins the World Health Organization (WHO) to observe World No Tobacco Day on Friday, May 31. This year’s theme is “Free Yourself” from tobacco advertising, promotion and sponsorship. This is a message that fits well with the Lung Association’s drive to see the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) fully implement its authority to regulate the manufacture, sale and marketing of all tobacco products.

As a result of the 2009 Family Smoking Prevention and Tobacco Control Act (Tobacco Control Act), FDA was given authority over all tobacco products, but it has failed to assert its jurisdiction and to begin to regulate tobacco products other than cigarettes and smokeless tobacco products – leaving cigars, little cigars, hookah and e-cigarettes unregulated.

Because FDA has not asserted its authority over these other tobacco products, the tobacco industry moved swiftly to capitalize on the void. There has been an explosion of e-cigarette marketing and sales, as well as unproven claims that the products will help smokers quit. The cigar industry has also capitalized. They have introduced bills in the House and Senate that would take away future FDA oversight of most cigars, and continued to manufacture flavored cigars designed to appeal to kids.

Manufacturers have also released new tobacco products, maneuvering their way around the provision of the Tobacco Control Act which is supposed to prohibit manufacturers from introducing new products without FDA’s prior review.

Because of this, the American Lung Association calls on the FDA and the entire Department of Health and Human Services to use its full authority to regulate tobacco products and turn the tide against the leading cause of preventable illness and death in America. Please send an email today to Kathleen Sibelius, the Secretary of the Department of Health and Human Services, urging her to move forward with keeping our kids safe from all tobacco products.

Becoming Tobacco Free

Tobacco use is the one of the leading causes of preventable illness and death in the world, responsible for six million deaths globally and 443,000 deaths in America alone each year. Despite tobacco’s enormous toll in global suffering, the tobacco industry is furiously fighting to undermine all lifesaving regulations, including blocking the use of graphic warning labels and fighting attempts to limit tobacco advertising and sponsorship.

The American Lung Association commemorates World No Tobacco Day by urging smokers to quit and by providing the tools and information needed to go tobacco-free for good! Our Freedom From Smoking© Online is a highly successful, self-paced program that’s available 24 hours a day, and provides the tools and support that can help women and men quit.  Nurses, Respiratory therapists and trained smoking cessation counselors are available by calling the American Lung Association’s Lung Helpline at 1-800-LUNG-USA.

To enroll in the program, or to buy a membership for a loved one, visit Freedom From Smoking© Online at: www.ffsonline.org.

There are many other ways you can show your support of World No Tobacco Day:

  • Use this day to begin your quitting process. Ask for help, work on a plan and before you know it, you’ll be on the road to becoming smokefree!
  • Become a Facebook®  fan! And while you’re there, please donate your status to the cause. On Friday, simply change your status to: Today is World Tobacco Day – for tips on quitting, go to www.lung.org/stop-smoking/.
  • Follow us on Twitter! It’s a great place to find encouragement and support.
  • Make a donation. Your gift can truly save lives.