While CDC Report Shows Progress in Reducing U.S. Adult Smoking Rates, States Must Do More to  Continue Trend

Statement of Charles D. Connor, President and Chief Executive Officer, American Lung Association

(September 6, 2011)

“While the report on U.S. adult smoking rates appearing in today’s issue of the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s Vital Signs reflects progress from 2005 to 2010, that trend is likely to change unless states do more to pass proven tobacco control policies such as smokefree workplace laws and invest in effective prevention and cessation programs.

“The report notes that 19.3 percent of adults smoked in 2010 compared with 20.9 percent in 2005. However, the reduction was not consistent over the five-year period and does not reflect the stalling—and even backsliding—of states in passing policies to fight tobacco use in 2011.

“For the first time since 2001, no states passed a comprehensive smokefree law in 2011, and Nevada actually rolled back its existing smokefree law approved by voters in 2006. Devastating cuts to tobacco prevention programs continued in many states, including the defunding of a successful program that has helped drive down both adult and youth smoking rates in Washington state to among the lowest in the country.  

“Progress in reducing adult smoking rates cannot be sustained if states are moving backward. The American Lung Association strongly urges all states to pass proven tobacco control policies and invest in tobacco prevention programs—even amid a challenging fiscal climate.”  

Editor’s Note:

For more information on smokefree laws and policies, click here.

Those who wish to join the fight for smokefree air may sign our Smokefree Air Challenge petition.


About the American Lung Association
The American Lung Association is the leading organization working to save lives by improving lung health and preventing lung disease, through research, education and advocacy. The work of the American Lung Association is focused on four strategic imperatives: to defeat lung cancer; to improve the air we breathe; to reduce the burden of lung disease on individuals and their families; and to eliminate tobacco use and tobacco-related diseases.  For more information about the American Lung Association, a holder of the Better Business Bureau Wise Giving Guide Seal, or to support the work it does, call 1-800-LUNGUSA (1-800-586-4872) or visit: Lung.org.