Lung Association Applauds Attorney General Zoeller for Urging Major Retailers to Stop Selling Tobacco Products

Official Statement of the American Lung Association in Indiana

INDIANAPOLIS (March 17, 2014)

The American Lung Association in Indiana applauds Indiana Attorney General Greg Zoeller who is one of the attorneys general in 28 states and territories that are asking five major U.S. retailers to stop selling tobacco products in stores that also have pharmacies. 

We join Attorney General Zoeller and the other attorneys general in calling for Wal-Mart Stores, Inc., Walgreen Co., Rite Aid Corp., Safeway Inc. and Kroger Co., to remove tobacco products from their shelves. 

The group of attorneys general are urging the retailers to follow the example of CVS Caremark Corp., who last month announced their plans to stop selling tobacco products. The Lung Association commends them for their forward-thinking decision to prioritize the health and well-being of current and future customers and employees and for helping create a tobacco-free generation of youth. 

CVS Caremark is absolutely right. The sale of tobacco products, the number one cause of preventable death and disease, is fundamentally inconsistent with a commitment to improving health. We urge these five retailers and all retailers to take note of CVS Caremark's actions and join in efforts to help reduce access to tobacco and tobacco use, and eliminate tobacco-caused deaths and disease.

Today there are 43.8 million smokers in the country. Tobacco-related diseases, such as lung cancer, chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD), other cancers, heart disease and stroke kill almost half a million Americans each year. Everyone has a stake in reducing tobacco's terrible toll. By working to reduce access to tobacco products, every person and every company can play a role in helping end this toxic threat.

Media contact: James A. Martinez, American Lung Association in the Upper Midwest, O: 312-445-2501, C: 312-718-5875, E: James.Martinez@Lung.org.

About the American Lung Association in Indiana 
Our mission is to save lives by improving lung health and preventing lung disease. With your generous support, the American Lung Association is "Fighting for Air" through research, education and advocacy. For more information about the American Lung Association or to support the work it does, call 1-800-LUNG-USA (1-800-586-4872) or visit www.LungIL.org.