Learning Objectives: Explain how adding an international perspective to local tobacco control advocacy campaigns boosts young people's motivation to take action. Describe how state-wide youth programs have used international examples to expose the truth about the tobacco industry List three examples of worthwhile youth action campaigns that connect local-global tobacco control issues.
Abstract: Statewide youth tobacco control programs that target Big Tobacco itself have proven to be highly effective in countering tobacco industry efforts to replace dead smokers with young ones. Now programs like Students Working Against Tobacco (FL), Target Market (MN), and Reality Check (NY) are taking their successful strategy global, exposing not just what the tobacco industry is doing at home, but also abroad. Virgin Mary and Jesus cigarette calendars (Philippines), "American Dream" brand cigarettes with a Statue of Liberty logo (Georgia), Philip Morris's removal of all its advertising for the U.S. President's visit to Senegal in 1998 - these are just a few of the examples that the programs in Florida, Minnesota, and New York have incorporated into youth-led campaigns, multi-media presentations, trainings and television advertisements in the past year. Youth involved with the statewide programs have also established youth-to-youth partnerships with youth groups in Asia, Africa, and Eastern Europe through Essential Action's Global Partnerships for Tobacco Control program. The states have found the global approach useful in mobilizing youth, generating heightened outrage, reaching out to diverse populations, and discrediting the tobacco industry's "we've changed" public relations campaigns in the U.S. Working in solidarity with youth abroad, youth in these states also seek to ensure that decreased smoking rates in the U.S., do not lead to more aggressive tobacco industry marketing strategies abroad. Panelists will present multiple examples of local-global initiatives and discuss ways in which session attendees might similarly adopt a global approach.
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