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Virginia Faith Leaders Call on Senators Webb & Warner to Support Legislation to Protect Kids from Tobacco
Date:3/5/2009

RICHMOND, Va., March 5 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- A diverse coalition of clergy and lay members from faith organizations throughout Virginia held a press conference today to call on Senators Jim Webb and Mark Warner to support legislation that would grant the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) authority over tobacco products. The legislation would protect kids from tobacco and save lives.

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"Virginia faith leaders hope and pray that Senators Webb and Warner will support this legislation that will help us save lives in our state and across the nation," said Bishop Charlene Kammerer of the Virginia Conference of the United Methodist Church. "The toll tobacco takes in our state -- and in our nation -- every year is devastating. But the REAL costs are what it does to our families. We need our members of Congress to stand up for Virginia's kids."

Despite all the death and disease they cause, tobacco products are virtually unregulated to protect consumers' health. This continuing lack of regulation allows the tobacco companies to market their deadly products to children, deceive consumers about the harm their products cause and resist even the most minimal steps to make their products less harmful.

The legislation is being marked-up this week in the House Energy and Commerce Committee, and a House floor vote is expected in the coming weeks. The legislation is supported by more than 900 public health, faith and other organizations across the country, including every major national public health organization. A poll conducted in May 2008 found that 70 percent of American voters support Congress pass
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SOURCE Campaign for Tobacco-Free Kids
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