Tobacco-Free Clear Creek kicks off in county on Nov. 19

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Clear Creek County Public and Environmental Health announces its new tobacco prevention and health education program, Tobacco-Free Clear Creek — with the goal to reduce tobacco use and secondhand smoke exposure in the county.

Activities are funded with the 2005 voter-approved Amendment 35 Tobacco Excise Tax, administered by the Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment, and are intended to support best practices to reduce tobacco use in Colorado. CCCPEH is partnering with Jefferson County Public Health, also funded by Amendment 35, to maximize the tobacco-prevention efforts going on across the two counties.

According to the U.S. surgeon general, tobacco use remains the leading cause of preventable death in the United States. In the U.S. alone, cigarette smoking causes more than 480,000 deaths annually, including 42,000 deaths resulting from secondhand smoke exposure. Data from the Colorado Behavioral Risk Factor Surveillance System, accessed on the Colorado Health Indicator website, reports that between 2011 and 2013 nearly 30 percent of Clear Creek County’s adults smoked cigarettes.

“This program should help us increase awareness about tobacco cessation strategies and resources for support to quit successfully,” said Laura Robertson, public health educator with CCCPEH. “If this results in more attempts to quit and less exposure to secondhand smoke, then there should be a positive impact on the health of our community.”

CCCPEH staff will identify the community’s needs and interests to offer relevant, evidence-based approaches to tobacco prevention, including, but not limited to, providing resources, training and assistance to the community. The team also plans to partner with local health and wellness providers, housing providers and employers to implement strategies that support tobacco-free choices and environments among consumers and employees.

To help kick off this important initiative, CCCPEH will be organizing a “Quit for a Day Challenge” on Nov. 19. Find out more and register for the challenge by visiting bit.ly/QuitChallenge. Free quit kits with helpful tools are available at CCCPEH, the Clear Creek Resource Center and Loaves & Fishes.

For more information about Tobacco-Free Clear Creek, the “Quit for a Day Challenge” or supportive resources to help you or someone you care about quit tobacco, visit www.TobaccoFreeClearCreek.com or contact Laura Robertson at lrobertson@co.clear-creek.co.us or 303-670-7539.