This week, Cook County Department of Public Health officials launched a new campaign aimed at suburban Cook County (SCC) residents who smoke. The campaign, “Nothing to Kid About,” features ads depicting young children who are exposed to secondhand smoke through their daily activities and their desire to “quit smoking.”
The campaign is a multipronged approach that includes tobacco cessation and secondhand smoke prevention by linking smokers to the Illinois Tobacco Quitline for help, a text messaging component and hard hitting facts about secondhand exposure and the negative health effects on kids.
“Smoking around kids can trigger asthma attacks, cause respiratory problems and increase incidences of ear infections,” said CCDPH chief operating officer Terry Mason, MD, FACS. “The campaign is from the viewpoint of children. Smokers need to really hear the message: if you regularly smoke around your kids from birth, by age five, they will have inhaled more than 100 packs of cigarettes. I encourage residents to quit smoking so your kids can quit smoking; because smoking is nothing to kid about.”
The ads come at a time when 22 percent of suburban Cook County residents smoke, which is slightly higher than the national average of 20.4 percent. Adults in suburban Cook County making less than $25,000 a year are at the most risk for smoking and the largest proportion of smokers are between the ages of 25 and 64. From our data we know people want to quit smoking – 67 percent of current smokers have tried to quit smoking in the past year.
The campaign is funded with a grant from the Illinois Department of Public Health. The ads include a :30 spot that will air on local and cable television and corresponding transit, print and on-line ads that provide additional messaging and resources. The campaign runs through May 31, 2013.
To view the ads and for more information, please visit: www.cookcountypublichealth.org.
For assistance on quitting smoking, call the Illinois Tobacco Quitline at 1-866 QUIT YES or visit: www.quityes.org.