"Funding from the federal government is not enough" says a report released in the American Lung Association's fifth annual State of Tobacco Control Report Card. Though measures are taken all over the country, it may take some time to achieve success.
Stringent laws against smoking in public places and high taxes on nicotine would surely help but all states must come forward to execute this programme. According to Thomas A Carr, Manager of National Policy at the American Lung Association, productivity affected in USA due to tobacco is estimated at $167 billion.
Anti-tobacco programmes have not gained intense momentum in many states due to the intervention of tobacco companies. They are linked to politics and politicians in a powerful way. They are found to sponsor a lot of campaigning activities. Hence it is but natural that such drives are very slow.
The report released during this meet had graded all the states of America along with District of Columbia and Puerto Rico. The parameters that were considered are taxes on cigarette, smoke free environment and the drives to control the access of nicotine products to youth.
Maine got 'A' in all categories, 26 states obtained 'C' grade and 23 states got 'F". In New Jersey, $2.57 is paid as tax per pack of cigarettes. This is the highest in the country.
While talking about efforts to curtail smoking in 2006, Tennessee and North Carolina appear to be promising. In Tennessee smoking is banned in all state government buildings.
A rise in taxes on tobacco, increased allocation of funds for anti-tobacco programs, a ban on smoking in all public and government places would certainly help.