Butt Out: Cessation, Tobacco Control, Enforcement,
and Policy Services
Holistic-based tobacco control and cancer prevention service that aim to prevent, reduce and/or eliminate the risk of cancer among minority, under-served individuals and communities.
Tobacco use can lead to nicotine dependence and serious health problems. Quitting tobacco use dependence can significantly reduce the risk of suffering from smoking-related diseases. Tobacco dependence is a chronic condition that often requires repeated interventions, Nicotine is the psychoactive drug in tobacco products that produces dependence. Smokers are dependent on nicotine. Nicotine dependence is the most common form of chemical dependence in the United States. Quitting smoking is difficult and may require multiple attempts. Smokers often relapse because of stress, weight gain, and withdrawal symptoms. Nicotine withdrawal symptoms may include irritability, anxiety, difficulty concentrating, and increased appetite.
Breaking free from nicotine dependence is not the only reason to quit smoking. Cigarette smoke contains a deadly mix of more than 7,000 chemicals; hundreds are toxic and about 70 can cause cancer. Cigarette smoke can cause serious health problems, numerous diseases, and death. Fortunately, people who stop smoking greatly reduce their risk for disease and premature death.
“Butt Out” is a comprehensive tobacco use prevention and quitting tobacco dependence client centered service and a promising practice noted by the Center for Health Promotion, Education, Tobacco Use Prevention and Cessation Maryland Department of Health and Mental Hygiene. This innovative and comprehensive conventional and nonconventional tobacco control service is a leading entity in the PGC since 2008 and its effective treatments and helpful resources exist.
MISSION: Reduce preventable and premature deaths attributed to tobacco use by implementing programs to prevent, decrease and/or eliminate tobacco use and exposure to second and third hand tobacco smoke among racial and ethnic diverse minority communities
The Butt Out program offers without cost to qualified participants the following services:
- Prevention, treatment and quitting tobacco use dependence and maintenance
- Conventional nicotine replacement therapies
- Coaching (group/individual)
- Assessments screenings (health impact assessment, smoking survey, CO2 testing, weight and blood pressure screenings,
- Healthy lifestyle behavior and life course trainings (Telephone and online)
- Eight weeks comprehensive quitting tobacco use dependence training program (Smoking cessation programs are implemented via workforce, residential facilities, government agencies, community-based and hospital based)
- Policy development, review, implementation, monitoring and evaluation
- Legislative support an advocacy in cancer prevention and tobacco use prevention
- Tobacco enforcement education for tobacco vendors
From March 2016 to June 2016, the Butt Out program served as a tobacco vendor educator for the state of Maryland. Services were focused in Prince George’s County; one of the state’s biggest violators of selling tobacco products to minors. With the assistance of Prince George’s County Tobacco Control, the Butt Out Team targeted over 100 vendors to educate about selling their products to under-aged patrons. Most of those on the list were repeat offenders. In Prince George’s County, there are fines for selling tobacco to under-aged customers; $100 for the 1st violation, $500 for the 2nd, and $1000 for the 3rd with a possible license suspension.
Butt Out’s largest program is the Maryland Regional African American Tobacco Control Networks (RAATCN). With funding from the National REACH Coalition, the RAATCN will address tobacco control needs on Maryland’s Historically Black Colleges and Universities (HBCUs) campuses, in ethnic minority and low income communities. AWPLI has also worked on several state and local health departments’tobacco control initiatives. AWPLI will be partnering with the State of Maryland Department of Health and Mental Hygiene (DHMH) – Tobacco Control and Minority Health and Health Disparities Programs on this initiative. AWPLI has partnered with Morgan State University, Bowie State University, Sojourner Douglass College, Coppin State University, University of Maryland –Eastern Shore, Associated Black Charities– Dorchester County, Asian American Center of Frederick, and the United Black Clergy of Anne Arundel County to become a network hub and conduct tobacco control campaigns. For more information about the RAATCN, download the RAATCN booklet.
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**Funding through the state of Maryland Department of Minority Health and Mental Hygiene, Prince George’s County Health Department and the Maryland Center at Bowie State University**