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Annual Great American Smokeout Events - Crawford & Venango Counties

Tobacco Resistance Unit (TRU) youth members from Crawford and Venango Counties will be joining their peers from across the state in celebration of the American Cancer Society’s, Great American Smokeout (GASO). GASO takes place on Thursday, November 21st, and events are planned statewide to raise awareness of the dangers of tobacco use, including vaping and to call upon those addicted to nicotine to use GASO as their planned quit date, or date to start a quit plan.

Local events include a “Walk Out” at Titusville Area High School, staged by the Stand Tall and YWCA TRU groups which will include a social media storm to encourage students addicted to nicotine to quit by promoting My Life, My Quit which is a teen focused quit program that specializes in assistance with quitting vaping products such as e-cigarettes/Juuls as well as cigarettes and smokeless tobacco. MyLifeMyQuit.com also includes resources for parents, educators and healthcare providers. Meadville Area Middle School will be engaged in a poster advocacy campaign to promote Tobacco 21 which calls on our state legislators to increase the tobacco (including e-cigarettes) purchase age from 18 to 21. Increasing the age will limit access to younger students and keep them safer and less likely to initiate use. This event is coordinated by the Martin Luther King Jr. Mentoring Program TRU group. The YWCA of Oil City TRU group will also engage in a social media storm promoting My Life, My Quit and Tobacco 21.

According to the American Cancer Society website, more than 34 million Americans still smoke cigarettes, and tobacco use remains the single largest preventable cause of disease and premature death in the world. While cigarette smoking rates have dropped (from 42% in 1965 to 14% in 2017), cigar, pipe, vaping/e-cigarette use – other dangerous and addictive ways to smoke nicotine and tobacco – are very much on the rise. And as reported by Truinpa.org, e- cigarette (including Juul) use among high school students increased 78% from 2017 to 2018.

There is no “safe” way to smoke tobacco or nicotine. Quitting tobacco/nicotine has immediate and long-term benefits at any age. Quitting is hard but getting help through counseling or medications can double or triple the chances of quitting successfully.  For help quitting at any

age, call the PA Free Quitline at 1-800-Quit-NOW. Be sure to enquire about free quit aides when you call, such a free nicotine patches, gum or lozenge.

TRU advocates against Big Tobacco marketing techniques designed to entice youth into using tobacco and other nicotine products while raising awareness of health hazards of tobacco use among peers.  NWPA region has the largest TRU membership in the state.

The events are also sponsored by TRU, the YWCA, NWPA Tobacco Control Program, and the Crawford Health Improvement Coalition, and the Erie County Department of Health.  For more information on The Great American Smokeout visit www.cancer.org.

For more information on TRU and local cessation programs, contact Paula Di Gregory at 814.758.1919.
THS Students participate in annual Great American Smokeout 


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