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Faith Leaders Call on Iowa Members of Congress to Support Legislation to Protect Kids from Tobacco
Date:3/10/2009

is the leading cancer killer of women, having surpassed breast cancer in 1987, and smoking puts women and girls at greater risk of a wide range of deadly diseases, including heart attacks, strokes, emphysema and numerous cancers.

The bipartisan legislation pending before Congress would give the FDA authority to:

  • Restrict tobacco advertising and promotions, especially to children.
  • Require tobacco companies to disclose the contents of tobacco products, changes to their products and research about the health effects of their products.
  • Require changes in tobacco products, such as the removal or reduction of harmful ingredients.
  • Prohibit health claims about so-called "reduced risk" products that are not scientifically proven or that would discourage current tobacco users from quitting or encourage new users to start.
  • Require larger, more effective health warnings on tobacco products.
  • Prohibit terms such as "low-tar," "light" and "mild" that have mislead consumers into believing that certain cigarettes are safer than others.

"It is mind-boggling that tobacco products are the number one cause of preventable death in the United States, yet they are virtually unregulated to protect public health," said Naomi Sea Young Wittstruck Leadership Development Minister, The Iowa Annual Conference of the UMC. "Until Congress grants the FDA authority over tobacco products, America's kids and consumers will continue to be lured into addiction by the tobacco industry."

In Iowa, tobacco use causes $1 billion in health care bills each year and kills 4,400 residents; 18.9 percent of Iowa high school students currently smoke.


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SOURCE Campaign for Tobacco-Free Kids
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