New Report: Kentucky Earns Mostly Failing Grades for Tobacco Control Policies 

American Lung Association “State of Tobacco Control” report releases Kentucky grades for tobacco control policies, outlines steps to reduce burden of tobacco

Today, the American Lung Association released the 22nd annual “State of Tobacco Control” report, which finds that Kentucky received four Fs and one B grade for efforts to prevent and reduce tobacco use. 

The “State of Tobacco Control” report evaluates state and federal policies on actions taken to eliminate tobacco use and recommends proven-effective tobacco control laws and policies to save lives. 

“Tobacco use is the leading cause of death in Kentucky and across the country, and takes the lives of 8,860 state residents each year. The tobacco industry will do anything to protect their profits at the expense of Kentucky lives, so we must push forward in our efforts to prevent and reduce tobacco use,” said Shannon Baker, Advocacy Director at the American Lung Association in Kentucky. 

Kentucky’s Grades 
The “State of Tobacco Control” report grades states and the District of Columbia in five areas that have been proven to prevent and reduce tobacco use and save lives. In the 2024 report, Kentucky received the following grades: 
•    Funding for State Tobacco Prevention Programs – Grade F
•    Strength of Smokefree Workplace Laws – Grade F
•    Level of State Tobacco Taxes – Grade F
•    Coverage and Access to Services to Quit Tobacco – Grade B
•    Ending the Sale of All Flavored Tobacco Products – Grade F

This year’s report noted the need for Kentucky policy makers to focus on three key priorities: 
1.    Require all establishments selling nicotine products to obtain licenses, provide for and fund specific enforcement measures and establish a meaningful penalty structure for underage sales violations; 
2.    Increase funding for the state tobacco prevention and cessation program to $10 million, allocate the incremental $14 million the state stands to receive in Juul settlement funds over 6 years to the program and ensure that funding is spent according to the Centers for Disease Control and Preventions Best Practices for Comprehensive Tobacco Control Programs; and
3.    Support and defend local comprehensive smokefree laws, including e-cigarettes.

To learn more about this year’s “State of Tobacco Control” grades and take action, visit Lung.org/sotc.

Get involved and help the mission of the American Lung Association. The Fight For Air Climb in Louisville is coming up on March 24. Learn more at ClimbLouisville.org.

For more information, contact:

James A. Martinez
(312) 445-2501
[email protected]

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