SFM Timeline 2006- 2007: –Reorganization of group, committees formed, officers elected –Name and logo changed from Smoke Free Charlotte to Smoke Free Mecklenburg to encompass entire county –Grassroots, Advocacy and Media committees begin their community work –Presentations begin at Town and City Council meetings and County Commission meetings to gain support for the SFM resolution –SFM volunteers collected thousands of petitions from Mecklenburg County residents and visitors in support of smoke- free air –SFM members began working with all types of media to increase awareness on the issue of smoke-free air –SFM volunteers traveled to Raleigh to present to the Mecklenburg County delegation
SFM Timeline 2008-2009: –Throughout 2008 and leading into 2009, local efforts continued to build on the foundation that had already been laid in Mecklenburg County –The Advocacy Committee met with legislators once again on the local and state levels to secure their support –Grassroots volunteers continued collecting petitions and increasing awareness through community events –SFM media committee members kept the issue in the spotlight through articles, interviews and LTE’s –SFM volunteers traveled once again to Raleigh to meet with their legislators during a statewide smoke-free air lobby day
Grassroots Committee Design of new logo and promotional materials to be distributed by SFM Air Quality Monitoring Poll of Mecklenburg County registered voters Community events throughout Mecklenburg County – education, awareness and petition gathering Over 16,000 petitions collected by volunteers
SFM Poll Results Poll was conducted by Clark & Chase Research. Telephone interviews were conducted of Mecklenburg County registered voters using a standard questionnaire. Question: Local Government, such as Mecklenburg County, should have the ability to make its own laws regarding smoking in enclosed public places. 80.6% Agreed (either strongly or somewhat) Question: Do you support or oppose laws that would make offices, restaurants, bars and all other indoor workplaces smoke-free in your local community? 75.5% Support (either strongly or somewhat) Question: All workers deserve the right to work in a smoke-free environment. 88.4% Support (either strongly or somewhat) Question: If all other things were to remain the same, how likely would you be to go to your favorite restaurant or bar if it were to become smoke-free? 93.7% Were either more likely or equally as likely Question: How likely are you to choose a place for dining and entertainment that provides a smoke-free environment? 70% Were either very likely or somewhat as likely
Advocacy Committee Presentations to all town (6), city (1) and county legislators in Mecklenburg County to get SFM resolutions signed Individual meetings with local and state legislators in Mecklenburg County Presentation to Mecklenburg County delegation in Raleigh, 2007 Attendance at statewide smoke-free air lobby day in Raleigh, 2009
Resolution Preserving Local Authority To Protect Public Health WHEREAS, the majority of North Carolinians and other Americans support local authority to protect public health and smoke free air in workplaces and public places; WHEREAS, protecting people from the harmful effects of secondhand smoke is best accomplished by local communities working directly with the people most affected by smoke free air laws; and WHEREAS, the State legislature should not act to deprive local governments of the authority to protect people from the harmful effects of secondhand smoke; and WHEREAS, the people in local communities believe they should have the right to protect themselves against the harmful effects of secondhand smoke; and WHEREAS, secondhand smoke is a leading cause of preventable death in the country, causing the deaths of 35,000 Americans each year and nearly 1,220 to 2,180 North Carolina adults, children and babies; WHEREAS, the latest Surgeon General’s report concludes that there is NO safe level of exposure to secondhand smoke and that ventilation systems and separate smoking and non smoking sections in restaurants do NOT protect non smokers from the dangers of secondhand smoke; WHEREAS, numerous studies have found that tobacco smoke is a major contributor to indoor air pollution, and that breathing secondhand smoke is a cause of disease in healthy nonsmokers, including heart disease, stroke, respiratory disease, and lung cancer; and NOW THERFORE BE IT RESOLVED that the NC General Assembly will grant exemption for Mecklenburg County from GS-143-595-60 in order to preserve the rights of local governments to develop their own policies with regard to smoking in enclosed, indoor public places.
Dr. Robert Shepard, co-author of the Helena, Montana Heart Attack Study Sponsored by the Mecklenburg County Health Department and American Cancer Society
SFM presentation to the Mecklenburg County Delegation, Raleigh 2007
Media Committee SFM billboard – members secured in kind placement Interviews scheduled and aired on all major Charlotte television and radio stations Committee members secured placement of SFM ads and articles in most Mecklenburg County publications including –Charlotte Observer, Business Journal, Health & Fitness Magazine, Natural Awakenings, Charlotte Parent, Lake Norman Herald, Charlotte Medical Journal, Wellness Coalition and many more
Next Steps for Smoke Free Mecklenburg Work toward passing a county-wide ordinance making ALL indoor public places smoke free Presentations to the Health Committee of the County Commissioners, followed by the full Board of Commissioners Smoke-free parks and recreation areas Planning an HB 2 celebration event
Questions? Patti Bossert Grassroots Manager, American Cancer Society Vice Chair, Smoke Free Mecklenburg 704- 578-2417 Patricia.firstname.lastname@example.org
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