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World No Tobacco Day Sounds Urgent Call for Nations to Fight Tobacco Use, Save Lives

WASHINGTON, May 29 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- The following is a statement by Matthew L. Myers, President, Campaign for Tobacco-Free Kids:

The World Health Organization's World No Tobacco Day, to be celebrated May 31, is an important reminder of the devastating toll of the global tobacco epidemic and the urgent need for nations to implement proven measures to reduce tobacco use and save lives.

This year's theme -- Tobacco-Free Youth: Break the Tobacco Marketing Net -- focuses necessary attention on the billions of dollars tobacco companies spend to market their deadly and addictive products around the world, much of it aimed at children. Nations can reduce tobacco use among both children and adults by implementing the scientifically proven measures called for by the international tobacco control treaty, the Framework Convention on Tobacco Control. The treaty has been ratified by 155 nations, but unfortunately not by the United States.

To effectively reduce tobacco use, the WHO recommends that nations implement a package of six cost-effective solutions called MPOWER:

-- Monitor tobacco use and assess the impact of tobacco prevention and

cessation efforts;

-- Protect everyone from secondhand smoke with laws that require smoke-free

workplaces and public places;

-- Offer help to every tobacco user to quit;

-- Warn and effectively educate every person about the dangers of tobacco

use with strong, pictorial health warnings and hard-hitting, sustained

media campaigns;

-- Enact and enforce comprehensive bans on tobacco advertising, promotion

and sponsorships and on the use of misleading terms such as

"light" and "low-tar;"and

-- Raise the price of tobacco products by significantly increasing tobacco


According to the WHO, tobacco use is the leading cause of preventable death in the world today and will kill one billi

SOURCE Campaign for Tobacco-Free Kids
Copyright©2008 PR Newswire.
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