WV Division of Tobacco Prevention
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WV Division of Tobacco Prevention

African American Tobacco Cessation

African American Tobacco Prevention Initiative

Smoking has established itself as a health issue of major concern in the African American community. Currently, about one in five of all African American adults smoke, and about one in ten African American high school students are current smokers. In addition, smoking related illnesses are the number one cause of death in the African American community, surpassing all other causes of death, including Acquired Immunodeficiency Syndrome (AIDS), homicide, diabetes and accidents.

Despite these high smoking rates among African Americans, research has shown that African American smokers tend to think that smoking is socially unacceptable, and are highly motivated to quit. In fact, 70% of current African American smokers want to quit. Unfortunately, African American smokers face many barriers to smoking cessation, including high levels of nicotine dependence.

Resources:
Tobacco Use in the African American Community. The Truth Initiative.

Tobacco Use Among African Americans. A Fact Sheet provided by the Campaign for Tobacco Free Kids

Marketing Menthol: The History of Tobacco Industry Targeting of African Americans (CFTFK Fact Sheet)

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