Char-Koosta News

The Official Publication of the Flathead Nation online

Tobacco companies use American Indian themes to sell their deadly products

Great American Smokeout is November 16
From CSKT Tribal Health Department

ST. IGNATIUS — The Montana Tobacco Use Prevention Program (MTUPP), a statewide program of the Montana Department of Public Health and Human Services, is joining forces with the American Cancer Society and the National American Indian Heritage Month for this year’s Great American Smokeout. This annual event challenges smokers to quit cigarettes for at least one day, in hopes that they will quit for good. It is held around the country and helps raise awareness about tobacco use and to encourage tobacco users to quit, providing them with helpful cessation information and resources.

According to Amelia Adams “Commercial tobacco companies have often used the historic connection between American Indians and indigenous tobacco to sell their deadly, addictive product.” American Indian imagery continues to be used in tobacco marketing, and gives a wrong impression about traditional use or safety of the product contained.

So, this month, when celebrating the Great American Smokeout, MTUPP encourages you to recognize that there is no safe commercial tobacco product. Fourteen hundred (1,400) Montanans die every year from tobacco-related illnesses. “It’s our hope that the Great American Smokeout will push people that extra mile to make the decision to quit smoking even for the day,” said Amelia Adams.

Tobacco users who call the Montana Tobacco Quit Line are 7 to 10 times more likely to quit. The Montana Tobacco Quit Line at 1-800-QUIT-NOW offers free help to Montanans who want to quit using tobacco. The Quit Line offers free nicotine replacement therapy, such as patches, lozenges and gum, and free or low-cost medications.

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