ALBANY, N.Y., June 17 /PRNewswire/ -- Today, Community Partnerships for a Tobacco Free New York launched a campaign to educate New Yorkers about the benefits of tobacco free outdoor recreational areas. The campaign raises awareness of the environmental impact of tobacco litter, dangers of secondhand smoke and influence on children when tobacco use is not restricted.
Tobacco litter is poisonous to children and wildlife. Discarded cigarette butts are the most common form of litter. Studies show they are toxic, slow to decompose, and costly to remove. Cigarette butts have been found in the stomachs of fish, whales, birds and other marine animals and can cause digestive blockages. Children routinely pick them up and try to place in their mouths.
"The Community Partnership has designed a paid media campaign to educate communities about why we need to adopt more tobacco free outdoor policies," said Susan Kennedy, CP Media Project Coordinator. "Family recreation for children should not mean having to play among cigarette butts or being exposed to secondhand smoke."
Secondhand smoke contributes to and causes dozens of diseases and illnesses including asthma, heart disease, respiratory tract infections and ear infections. "It is important to remove pollutants from environments where children enjoy recreational activities. Because their lungs are so much smaller, children breathe in 50% more air than an adult making them more susceptible to the dangers of tobacco smoke even when outdoors," said Scott T. Santarella, President and CEO of the American Lung Association in New York.
Public support for outdoor tobacco use restrictions is growing. Currently outdoor tobacco use policies have been enacted in over 180 local municipalities throughout New York State. Local Community Partnerships can provide sample policies, signage and/or assistance in creating outdoor tobacco use policies. Visit www.TobaccoFreeNYS.org to learn more.
SOURCE Community Partnerships for a Tobacco Free New York