This November, Tobacco Free Allegheny is joining forces n with the Allegheny County Health Department and Live Well Allegheny to host the region’s third smoking cessation week (November 12-18) “Allegheny Quits for Life.”

 

Why is this important? Smoking rates are declining nationally, but the battle is far from over.    Every day, roughly 1,300 Americans die from smoking-related illnesses; that’s 480,000 a year.  This isn’t just a national problem – the health effects of tobacco smoke disproportionately affect Western Pennsylvanians.

 

In 2015, as part of the first ever Allegheny Quits for Life, TFA worked with 11 partner organizations and helped with 12 different events. That same week, the PA Free Quitline saw a 9% jump in calls from other weeks in November.  

 

19% of adult Allegheny County residents smoke, compared to 18.1% of Pennsylvania residents and 15% of adult Americans.  This is down from recent years, but this isn’t a category we want to be leading.  That’s why Tobacco Free Allegheny and the Allegheny County Health Department’s Live Well Allegheny campaign have joined forces again to make 2017 the year that Allegheny Quits for Life.

 

Allegheny Quits for Life will entail a week-long series of events and communications designed to support residents’ efforts to quit smoking.    Allegheny Quits for Life partners will be critical to convey the message that a smoke free Allegheny is a healthier Allegheny, and to secure commitments from Allegheny residents to take the first steps to quit.

November 12th through 18th is Smoking Cessation Awareness Week.  November 16th is the Great American Smokeout - the day when people are encouraged to quit, even just for one day.

Join us on November 13th for our kickoff event, Merengue Monday, presented in partnership with the Pittsburgh Cultural Trust!  This year's event will be held at Katz Plaza (7th and Penn Avenue). 

The Pittsburgh Cultural Trust has helped to transform a downtrodden section of Downtown into a world-class Cultural District that stands as a national model of urban revitalization through the arts.  Touring Broadway, contemporary dance, family events, education and community engagement programs, and cutting-edge visual arts are among the variety of arts and entertainment the Trust presents and exhibits.  Hundreds of artists, thousands of students, and millions of people expand their horizons in our theaters, galleries, and public art environments.

 

Ways to Quit

  • Call the PA Free Quitline at 1-800-QUIT-NOW.  They offer FREE counseling phone calls and the possibility of FREE medication (the patch, the gum, or the lozenge).
  • Talk to your healthcare professional about how they can help you quit.
  • Find a local class - there's plenty of different classes in Allegheny County. 

Share your Story

Tobacco Free Allegheny is active on multiple social media accounts.  Share the story of how you quit smoking for life with uson Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, or Youtube and use #AlleghenyQuitsforLife.  What helped you quit?  Did you quit for someone or something in particular?  Maybe your story will help someone else quit for life as well.

 

Public Service Video Contest

TFA will be hosting the third Public Service Announcement Video Contest for middle and high schoolers grades 6th through 12th.  Entries are due by October 6th!

Fact Sheets

 

Looking for some information about tobacco to share?  Check these ones out below:

 

E-cigarettes (also known as ENDS - Electronic Nicotine Delivery System)

Tobacco Consumption and taxes and cigarettes companies from Campaign for Tobacco Free Kids

Tobacco 21from Campaign for Tobacco Free Kids

Want to Partner with us?

 

Do you work with a healthcare organization that wants to partner with TFA and the Allegheny County Health Department on Cessation Awareness Week?  Let us know – contact Brittany Huffman.  In the meantime, share some information on your website or social media page. It’s all about awareness this week!

 

Do you have an event that your hosting the week of November 13th to help people quit smoking?  Let us know and we'll be sure to share it on our calendar.

 

A great big THANK YOU to our Steering Committee, listed below:

 

Chelsea Edwards, American Cancer Society

Cele Fichter-DeSando, Addiction Medicine Services

Marie Fontelo, Allegheny County Health Department

Hannah Hardy, Allegheny County Health Department

Brittany Huffman, Tobacco Free Allegheny

Anne Marie Kuchera, Children's Hospital of Pittburgh

Jazmin Nixon, American Lung Association

Gretchen North, YMCA of Greater Pittsburgh

Mark Rogalsky, Pittsburgh Mercy

Erica Saylor, American Lung Association

Megan Tulikangas, Health Policy Institute

Melissa Wade, Allegheny County Health Department

Abby Wilson, Allegheny County Health Department

Cassandra Wood, American Lung Association

 

Thank you to our current partners who are working with us to help Allegheny County residents quit smoking for life!  Click their logo to find out more about them.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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