Concord, NH – The New Hampshire Department of Health and Human Services announces March 25, 2009 is National Kick Butts Day (KBD). DHHS is helping spread the word about KBD, a day when youth come together to raise awareness about the risks of tobacco use and the ways in which tobacco companies market towards youth.
“We are committed to helping youth raise their voices about serious health issues that effect both them and the people they care about,” said DHHS Public Health Director Dr. José Montero. “Reducing youth initiation of tobacco use is one of the four primary goals of our Tobacco Prevention & Control Program (TPCP).”
The DHHS supports youth efforts across the state as they work towards educating both youth and adults on the dangers of tobacco use. Tobacco use is the number one preventable cause of premature death and disease in the US and in NH. Cigarettes kill more than 440,000 Americans every year – more deaths than from AIDS, alcohol, car crashes and accidents, murders, suicides, drugs and fires combined. Currently 19.3% of NH adults smoke and 19% of high school students smoke. Sadly, 1,800 NH kids start smoking each year and increasingly, NH youth are using smokeless tobacco products, such as chew tobacco or the newest product, snus.
Governor Lynch recently met with members of the New Hampshire Youth Network’s Youth Advisory Board (YAB) to sign a document proclaiming March 25, Kick Butts Day in New Hampshire, a highlight of the importance of the issue. Breathe New Hampshire www.breathenh.org is a non-profit organization that recently established this statewide youth network.
For more information about KBD visit: www.KickButtsDay.org. For more information on free services and resources to help quit tobacco use call the TPCP NH Smokers’ Helpline at 1-800-Try-To-Stop or visit www.trytostopnh.org. There are free educational materials that can be tailored to youth, pregnant women, etc.