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Join us April 5 for Kick Butts Day: A Health Awareness Event
03/23/2010From Kick Butts Day 2010
Washington Kids 'Kick Butts' on March 24
State Leaders Urged to Support Higher Tobacco Taxes, Other Tobacco Prevention Initiatives
WASHINGTON, DC (March 18, 2010) – Kids in Washington will take center stage in the
fight against tobacco on March 24 as they join thousands of young people nationwide
for the 15th annual Kick Butts Day. More than 1,000 events are planned in all 50
states and the District of Columbia (for a list of local events see below).
Sponsored by the Campaign for Tobacco-Free Kids, Kick Butts Day is an annual celebration
of youth leadership and activism in the fight against tobacco use. Kids are sending
two powerful messages on Kick Butts Day: They want the tobacco companies to stop targeting
them with marketing for cigarettes and other tobacco products, and they want elected
leaders to do more to protect them from tobacco.
The Campaign for Tobacco-Free Kids and other public health advocates are calling on
elected officials to support proven measures to reduce tobacco use and its devastating
toll. As states struggle with record budget deficits, state leaders should increase
tobacco taxes both to prevent kids from smoking and to raise revenue to balance budgets
and fund critical programs. States should also enact smoke-free air laws that apply
to all workplaces and public places and implement well-funded tobacco prevention and
"On Kick Butts Day, kids are standing up to the tobacco companies, and elected officials
should stand with them by supporting proven tobacco prevention measures," said Matthew
L. Myers, President of the Campaign for Tobacco-Free Kids. "We know what works to
reduce smoking and other tobacco use. Every state should implement these proven solutions,
including higher tobacco taxes, well-funded tobacco prevention programs and smoke-free
Tobacco use is the number one cause of preventable death in the United States, killing
more than 400,000 people and costing $96 billion in health care bills each year.
While the nation has made significant progress in reducing youth smoking, 20 percent
of high school students still smoke.
In Washington, tobacco use claims 7,600 lives and costs $1.95 billion in health care
bills each year. Currently, 14.4 percent of the state's high school students smoke,
and 27,000 kids try cigarettes for the first time each year.
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