208664 Operation Storefront Survey: An urban perspective on tobacco products and advertisement accessibility

Tuesday, November 10, 2009

Renee' Witcher-Johnson, MPH , Office of Health Promotion & Prevention, Cleveland Department of Public Health, Cleveland, OH
Pam Brackett, MNO , Office of Health Promotion & Prevention, Cleveland Department of Public Health, Cleveland, OH
Melissa Foos, MPH , Office of Health Promotion & Prevention, Cleveland Department of Public Health, Cleveland, OH
Background: Studies show that point-of-purchase advertising and promotion in combination with access to products directly influence brand and product selection. Cleveland, Ohio is a large metropolitan city which is inundated with retail outlets/corner stores whose counters are beleaguered with tobacco displays, signage and special offers. The “Operation Storefront” study has enabled public health to partner with community development neighborhood agencies and youth volunteers to conduct interior and exterior surveillance of tobacco signage and products in corner and convenience stores.

Method: This study uses the survey research method to 1) ascertain surveillance data on exterior and interior tobacco promotions and product placement and 2) spatial analysis of corner/convenient stores demonstrating higher quantity of advertisements and products and proximity to schools and parks. The study included a sample of corner stores in the metropolitan area of Cleveland, Ohio.

Results: The partnership will allow public health to work with store owners to reduce the number of exterior and interior tobacco signage and utilize posters promoting healthy messages, created by youth, that counter tobacco companies marketing efforts for interior and exterior store display (June 2009, final analysis report ).

Discussion: The implications of our findings will be used to engage community stakeholders in advocating for change through health education and promotion activities in addition, to local policy and legislation enforcement.

Learning Objectives:
1. Identify and assess the impact of interior and exterior advertising throughout convenient/corner stores. 2. Demonstrate the influence of tobacco advertising on consumer non-consumer decision making. 3. Identify and discuss methods for engaging convenient /corner store owners to participate in Operation Storefront. 4. Design an education curriculum on how to create anti-tobacco healthy messaging.

Presenting author's disclosure statement:

Qualified on the content I am responsible for because: Presenter: Masters in Public Health, Supervisor for the Office of Surveillance and Epidemiology (6 years with Cleveland Public Health). Epidemiologist for the Fresno County Community Health Department in California (2 years). Have done extensive data and spatial analysis of chronic disease data from the BRFSS and YRBS surveys conducted in the Clevelenad area. Have led over 60 outbreaks over the years in the field of epidemiology in which data collection and development of data collection tools were demonstrated. Have worked extensively with youth on issues surrounding tobacco and alohol consumption through a certified residential facility for at risk youth. Have submitted to APHA before related to Emergency preparedness and received an award for the poster session.
Any relevant financial relationships? No

I agree to comply with the American Public Health Association Conflict of Interest and Commercial Support Guidelines, and to disclose to the participants any off-label or experimental uses of a commercial product or service discussed in my presentation.