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March 15 marks Kick Butts Day, a day of activism that empowers youth to stay tobacco free by standing out, speaking up, and seizing control against Big Tobacco. Bismarck-Burleigh Public Health and the North Dakota Center for Tobacco Prevention and Control Policy (BreatheND) encourage North Dakota youth to understand how addictive tobacco products are, and that tobacco can hold you in its grip for life. These are all reasons to never start.
Despite promising to stop marketing to youth in the 1998 tobacco settlement, tobacco companies continue to find new ways to recruit new customers. Tobacco companies know that if you aren’t using tobacco by your 18th birthday, chances are you will be tobacco free for life. That’s why they target our kids, and it’s working. Every day more than 2,500 kids in the U. S. will try smoking for the first time and 400 of these kids will become new daily-addicted smokers.
Overall, tobacco use is still the leading cause of preventable death in the U.S., killing more than 480,000 people every year.
“Many young people aren’t aware of how addictive nicotine products are or that tobacco companies are targeting them to be the next addicted tobacco user” said Jordyn Schaefbauer, Tobacco Prevention Specialist with Bismarck-Burleigh Public Health. “Kick Butts Day gives us the opportunity to get that message across and encourage North Dakota youth to be tobacco free.”
Bismarck-Burleigh Public Health encourages community members to share the ways and reasons you stay tobacco-free on our Facebook page by using the tag #KickButtsDayND. Post or like our Facebook page here: www.facebook.com/BBPH.gov.
To learn about Kick Butts Day programs taking place in your community, contact Bismarck-Burleigh Public Health at 701-355-1595 or go to www.breathend.com to learn more about tobacco prevention.