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2004ASAP--Session 1 Who  Me  An Activist

2004ASAP--Session 1 Who Me An Activist







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    2004ASAP--Session 1 Who  Me  An Activist 2004ASAP--Session 1 Who Me An Activist Presentation Transcript

    • Who, me, an activist? Debra Efroymson (Nga) Regional Director PATH Canada, Dhaka
    • Why is tobacco control needed?
    • Tobacco control for…health
      • 4,000 chemicals in tobacco smoke
      • Over 40 known carcinogens in tobacco smoke
      • Causes many kinds of cancer, plus heart disease, stroke, respiratory disease, etc. etc.
      • Biggest cause of preventable death
      • Takes on average 8 years of life from smokers
      • Causes many diseases in non-smokers exposed to smoke
    • Tobacco control for…environment
      • Trees cut down to create land to plant tobacco
      • Trees cut down to dry tobacco
      • Chemical wastes from tobacco production pollute land and water
      • Fires caused by smoking
      • Smoking main cause of indoor air pollution
    • Tobacco control for…economy
      • Foreign exchange wasted importing tobacco
      • Money not spent on tobacco can be invested in the economy, creating more jobs and improving life
      • Health care costs, lost productivity
      • Tobacco mostly consumed by those who can least afford it—further drain on resources for the poorest
    • Tobacco control because…I’m angry!
      • Who is stronger: government or the tobacco industry?
      • Does an industry have the right to tell lies and deceive people?
      • Does an industry have the right to market a deadly, addictive product?
    • Why I’m angry at the tobacco industry: they…
      • Lied about health effects for decades
      • Market to young people and lie about it
      • Lied about tobacco being addictive
      • Lied about low-tar cigarettes being healthier
      • Continue to lie about passive smoking
    • More reasons!
      • Buy off other industries (hospitality, advertising)
      • Try to stop governments from passing law
      • Are active in smuggling cigarettes
      • Pretend to represent farmers
      • Run counter-effective youth prevention programs
      • Have tried to infiltrate the WHO
    • Health effects
      • In 1950s tobacco industry knew smoking caused cancer; denied it for decades
      • “The problem is how do you sell death? How do you sell poison that kills 350,000 people per year, 1,000 people a day?”—former marketing consultant to 5 tobacco companies
    • Targeting youth
      • “…the base of our business is the high school student.” (Lorillard, 1978)
      • “The loss of younger adult males and teenagers is more important to the long term, drying up the supply of new smokers to replace the old. This is not a fixed loss to the industry: its importance increases with time.” (RJR 1982)
    • Addictiveness of tobacco
      • “Nicotine is addictive. We are, then, in the business of selling nicotine—an addictive drug…” (B&W 1963)
      • “…BAT should learn to look at itself as a drug company rather than as a tobacco company.” (BAT 1980)
    • Low tar (light) cigarettes
      • Industry wish: “reassure the consumer that these brands are relatively more ‘healthy’” (BAT 1971)
      • Despite industry claims and suggestions, “…the effect of switching to low tar cigarettes may be to increase, not decrease, the risks of smoking.” Tobacco Advisory Council, 1979
    • Passive smoking
      • Philip Morris spent millions of dollars in the 1990s to undermine a study on the dangers of passive smoking
      • “Our objective is to limit the introduction and spread of smoking restrictions and maintain the widespread social acceptability of smoking in Asia.” (PM 1989)
    • Threatening politicians
      • “Let politicians know the down-side of anti-activity by identifying a vulnerable candidate, bringing forces to bear to cause him/her to lose the election, then discreetly let other politicians know we have done this.” (PM 1987)
    • Smuggling
      • “Following a loss of share in 1992, ITL rebounded by making its major trademarks available in smuggled channels…” (Imperial Tobacco, 1994)
    • Farmers
      • Established the International Tobacco Growers’ Association (ITGA) as an industry front group (work done by an ad agency in England, not by farmers)
      • “…support of the Growers will be invaluable in our continued battle with critics of the industry…” (BAT 1988)
      • In fact, most farmers are very poor
    • Youth
      • Brown & Williamson “will not support a youth smoking program which discourages young people from smoking.” (Tobacco Institute 1983)
      • “They make the cigarettes, then tell us not to smoke them—isn’t there any other target for their mischief?”—15-year old male student in Bangladesh
    • WHO
      • Spend millions attacking and fighting the WHO
      • “Paul has managed to persuade PAHO to take tobacco off their list of priorities for this year.” (BAT 1991)
    • Conclusion Tobacco control because:
      • Tobacco kills those who buy it
      • Tobacco smoke hurts and kills those exposed to it
      • Tobacco cultivation harms the environment
      • Tobacco harms economies (individual, family, national)
      • The tobacco industry can’t be trusted
    • Thanks!