The court order requires major U.S. tobacco companies to post eye-catching signs that tell the public the truth about the deadly consequences of smoking at approximately 220,000 retail locations across the country. The signs must be posted by Sept. 30 and are required to be visible until June 30, 2025.
“For far too long, tobacco companies have been allowed to muddy the waters about the dangers of smoking,” said Brielle Carnright, tobacco project coordinator at The Heart Network, a nonprofit that works with healthcare providers and public health agencies to promote tobacco cessation across the North Country. “The federal court order not only holds the tobacco industry accountable for decades of deception, but also helps to reinforce the message that smoking remains one of the number one threats to public health in our communities.”
“It’s no accident that smoking is the number one cause of preventable death in our country,” Carnright added. “Misleading and deceptive marketing has played a dangerous role in hooking people — teens and youth in particular. There’s still a lot of work to be done, especially in helping kids stay away from flavored tobacco and e-cigarettes, but this is another in a line of recent wins that will ultimately improve peoples’ lives.”
The court order requires that the corrective statements include information on: the adverse health effects of smoking; the addictiveness of nicotine; the lack of significant health benefits from smoking low tar, light, ultra light, mild or natural cigarettes; the manipulation of cigarette design and composition to ensure optimum nicotine delivery; and the adverse health effects of exposure to secondhand smoke.
As smoking rates decline nationwide and across New York State, the percentage of adult smokers in North Country counties remains higher than average, and the use of vape products by teens is at an all-time high. The Heart Network and Glens Falls Hospital partner to offer North Country Nicotine Consultants (NCNC), a program that provides resources and consultation to health care providers to help increase delivery of comprehensive, evidence-based treatment for nicotine addiction.
Providers looking to help their patients quit are encouraged to learn more by visiting heartnetwork.org/ncnc or contacting The Heart Network’s Brielle Carnright at firstname.lastname@example.org or Riley Brennan at Glens Falls Hospital at email@example.com.
If you’re a smoker looking to quit, you can find free resources at nysmokefree.com or call the New York State Smokers’ Quitline at 1-866-NY-QUITS.