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Santa Clara County Public Health Department to Announce Results of Major Tobacco Prevention Efforts

2010 – 2011 Community’s Health on Tobacco Report Card

WHAT:
The Tobacco Free Coalition of Santa Clara County and Community Advocate Teens of Today in partnership with the Santa Clara County Public Health Department will release the final results of the 2010 – 2011 Community’s Health on Tobacco Report Card. This report issues grades to County of Santa Clara and 13 of its 15 cities on tobacco control policies. Now in its fifth release, the Tobacco Report Card is funded through California Proposition 99, and serves as a tool to both monitor and encourage cities in Santa Clara County to strengthen their tobacco control policies through enforcement and compliance efforts.

WHO:
County of Santa Clara Supervisor Ken Yeager
Santa Clara County Health Officer Dr. Martin Fenstersheib
The Santa Clara County Tobacco Free Coalition

WHEN:
Wednesday, July 27th, 2011, 10:30am

WHERE:
County Government Center, 70 West Hedding Street, San Jose, East Wing News Conference Room

WHY:
In November 2010, the Santa Clara County Board of Supervisors adopted a strong tobacco retail licensing ordinance that requires retailers in the unincorporated areas of the county to obtain an annual license to sell tobacco as well as limit tobacco sales near schools. Currently, many cities in the county are making progress to strengthen their tobacco control policies which includes adopting a similar policy as the county.

Despite budget reductions and declining resources, most Santa Clara County cities have made significant strides in prioritizing tobacco prevention efforts.

Youth decoy operations were conducted along with city police departments in 13 cities, plus unincorporated areas of Santa Clara County, reaching 364 tobacco retailers. Los Altos Hills and Monte Sereno were not included as they currently have no tobacco retailers within their jurisdictions. Currently, the illegal sales rate to minors in Santa Clara County is 17.3 percent as reported by the California STAKE Act.

The Tobacco Report Card grading criteria now focuses on jurisdictions efforts on enforcement and compliance of current and new tobacco laws. The report card targets the following areas: adoption and enforcement of tobacco retail licensing (TRL) or a conditional use permit (CUP), tobacco advertising sales and display, and preventing youth access to tobacco. Jurisdictions that had either a TRL or CUP were given additional points on their grade which earned them higher marks than cities that don’t have a similar policy in place. Extra credit was also given to cities and the county for extra enforcement, community education outreach (such as school education), follow-up on complaints and attending tobacco-related trainings, an essential component for promoting lasting policy solutions.

To view a copy of all cities and the county grades, a list of policies by jurisdiction, as well as learn more facts about Tobacco Retail Licensing go to www.sccphd.org/tobacco-prevention.

About the Tobacco Prevention and Education Program
Since 1989, Santa Clara County Tobacco Prevention & Education Program (TPEP) mission is to improve the health of all residents in Santa Clara County by reducing illness and premature death attributed to the use of tobacco products. Funded through the California Proposition 99, TPEP educates local people, businesses, organizations and schools about local tobacco control policies and available quit resources.

For more information about the Tobacco Prevention and Education Program, call 408-793-2700 or visit www.sccphd.org/tobacco-prevention.

MEDIA CONTACT: Amy Cornell, Health Information Officer (408)792-5155, Amy.Cornell@phd.sccgov.org
Posted: July 26, 2011