Blair Horner on Up In Smoke Report
Billions in Revenue from Tobacco, Little to Help Smokers Quit and Keep Kids from Smoking
Statement from Blair Horner, Vice President for Advocacy, American Cancer Society of NY & NJ, regarding Up in Smoke report detailing inadequate state spending on anti-tobacco programs despite billions in revenue from tobacco.
“It’s shameful that the state can accept revenue from smokers in the form of taxes and spend less than a fraction of it to help smokers who want to quit. Anti-tobacco programs aren't a luxury that we should only pay for when it’s convenient or when budgets are flush. Tobacco control is a vital component of a healthy state and must have a consistent funding stream to be effective. New York State has a moral obligation to improve the public health of its citizens, and providing assistance to all smokers who want to quit should not be a question.
The math is so simple. As funds increase for tobacco control, smoking rates among adults and kids decrease. When smoking rates decline, so do healthcare costs. If the state wants to save money, here it is. As an investment, anti-smoking efforts seem as solid as it gets, with potential for a huge return in terms of dollars and lives.”
About the American Cancer Society
The American Cancer Society combines an unyielding passion with nearly a century of experience to save lives and end suffering from cancer. As a global grassroots force of more than three million volunteers, we fight for every birthday threatened by every cancer in every community. We save lives by helping people stay well by preventing cancer or detecting it early; helping people get well by being there for them during and after a cancer diagnosis; by finding cures through investment in groundbreaking discovery; and by fighting back by rallying lawmakers to pass laws to defeat cancer and by rallying communities worldwide to join the fight. As the nation’s largest non-governmental investor in cancer research, contributing more than $3.4 billion, we turn what we know about cancer into what we do. As a result, more than 11 million people in America who have had cancer and countless more who have avoided it will be celebrating birthdays this year. To learn more about us or to get help, call us any time, day or night, at 1-800-227-2345 or visit cancer.org.
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