Washington State DOC assists coalitions in five rural counties, the Confederated Tribes of the Colville Nation and the Washington Asian Pacific Islander Families Against Substance Abuse to mobilize youth and encourage community participation in prevention, cessation and public education activities; to support local and state polices that reduce tobacco initiation rates; and to recruit youth service and education organizations to add tobacco control to their responsibilities.
When the national settlement against the tobacco industry was announced, the Attorney General donated funds to support the first state-wide youth tobacco summit. These funds were leveraged with other private and public funds to create the first state-wide training in advocacy and education around tobacco control. The result was over 100 youth attending a conference and learning how to train their peers. Representatives of a new youth coalition were selected from the summit, naming themselves SOUL (Saving Ourselves from Unfiltered Lies).
One of their first events in February 2000 involves 1,000 youth who will attend a "SOUL Stomp" at the state capital to emphasize their concern about tobacco and the need for the legislature to fund a sustainable tobacco control program. These youth will also participate in a national youth and tobacco conference in Seattle in June, 2000. Some will also carry their message to the international tobacco control meetings in Chicago in August, 2000.
After laying the community groundwork through the SmokeLess States project, a strong state-wide network of youth leaders is emerging to enlist youth in this public health campaign.
Learning Objectives: The attendees will gain an understanding of: 1) what it takes to work with youth on tobacco control; 2) how coalitions can combine resources from the public and private sectors to achieve outcomes; 3) what elements are needed to ensure media coverage and community action
Keywords: Tobacco Control, Youth
Presenting author's disclosure statement:
Organization/institution whose products or services will be discussed: None
I do not have any significant financial interest/arrangement or affiliation with any organization/institution whose products or services are being discussed in this session.
The 128th Annual Meeting of APHA