“St. Louis County Receives $7.5 Million Grant for Tobacco Education & Cessation Efforts”

St. Louis County Executive, Charlie Dooley, flanked by dignitaries at announcement

From left to right above: Stacy Houston, Congressman Lacy Clay’s office; Judy Baker, US DHHS; Charley Dooley; Margaret Donnelly, Director, Missouri DHHS; Dr. Dolores Gunn, Director, County DOH; St. Louis County Councilwoman Barbara Fraser (partially hidden); Clayton Mayor Linda Goldstein; Ann Hynes, Head of the County Health Education Program, DOH; and Bob Burns, Field Representative, US Senator Claire McCaskill.

I was present at a well-attended announcement by St. Louis County Executive Charlie Dooley of a CDC grant to promote tobacco prevention and cessation efforts in the county. It was expected to give a substantial boost to current efforts, and will result in additional staff hiring. It is understood that the county health department will work closely with the group at Washington University Institute for Public Health, led by Doug Luke, PhD. The major efforts to promote smoke-free air last year in St. Louis City and County may have helped in securing this grant money, which is part of the stimulus initiative enacted by the Congress early last year.

The above is my preliminary understanding of this effort and will be amended if contrary details prove it needs amending.

I’m proud of the fact that in his remarks Charlie Dooley mentioned the efforts of MoGASP in this area, as well as those of others. We are glad and grateful to have been a part of it. Below are some photos taken at the event, which started at 1:30 pm in the Conference Room on the ninth floor. I snapped some additional photos after the formal presentation, and one was also taken of Mr. Dooley who was good enough to pose with me for a photo. They are appended after the press release.

St. Louis County Councilwoman, Barbara Fraser

Bob Burns, Field Representative, speaking on behalf of U.S. Senator Claire McCaskill

Margaret Donnelly, Director, Missouri Dept. of Health & Senior Services

Margaret Donnelly, Director, Missouri Dept. of Health & Senior Services

Some members of the invited audience: Former Ald. & co-chair of Prop N, Charley Gatton; Pat Lindsey, Project Manager, Tobacco-Free Missouri, St. Louis Coalition; & Dan Duncan, NCADA St. Louis, Director of Community Services

Saint Louis County Receives $7.5 Million Grant for Tobacco Education and Cessation Efforts

SAINT LOUIS COUNTY, MO – (March 19th, 2010) Saint Louis County has been awarded more than $7.5 million for tobacco education and cessation efforts by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). The grant funds will be spent locally over the next two years.

“We are very excited about this award and look forward to the positive benefits it will have on the lives of Saint Louis County residents,” said County Executive Charlie A. Dooley. “We are also very proud of our County Health Department for applying for and securing these funds for Saint Louis County.”

The tobacco education and cessation grant awarded to Saint Louis County is for $7,593,110. Earlier today, 44 Prevention and Wellness Grants were announced by U.S. Department of Health and Human Services Secretary Kathleen Sebelius, altogether totaling $372.8 million.

The funds will be spent locally to educate youth about the dangers of tobacco use, to educate the general population about the dangers of secondhand smoke, and to assist smokers who want to quit the habit.

Added Dr. Dolores J. Gunn, Director of the Saint Louis County Department of Health, “We have long known that tobacco is public health enemy number one. This grant will go a long way in helping us fight the problems associated with tobacco use on a local level.”

Spending specifics will not be available for about a month. The Saint Louis County Department of Health will be working with the CDC over the next 30 days to create a detailed budget for the entire grant award.

The County Health Department will work with a variety of community partners over the next two years to achieve the grant’s goals. Among others, these partners will include Washington University’s Center for Tobacco Policy Research, the St. Louis University School of Public Health, and Tobacco Free Missouri – Greater St. Louis Coalition.

In addition, the department will work with local schools, businesses, and other private organizations to educate people about tobacco issues. There will also be a media element to the grant-funded program that will dovetail into the national anti-tobacco “Truth Campaign.”

This funding opportunity is a result of the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009 and is being provided jointly by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), the National Center for Chronic Disease Prevention and Health Promotion (NCCDPHP), and the Division of Adult and Community Health (DACH).

For additional information about the Communities Putting Prevention to Work (CPPW) initiative and grants, visit http://www.cdc.gov/chronicdisease/recovery/community.htm.

For more information about the Saint Louis County Department of Health, visit http://www.stlouisoc.com/doh.

Margaret Donnelly, Director, Missouri DHHS

Charlie Dooley and Martin Pion, MoGASP

Judy Baker, US DHHS and Sen. McCaskill’s rep. Bob Burns

9 responses to ““St. Louis County Receives $7.5 Million Grant for Tobacco Education & Cessation Efforts”

  1. Grant money given in the name of health is nothing more than state sponsored tyranny. There will be a day when these prohibitionists will be see a backlash like no other. Even the Russians couldn’t do in 50 years what our government has done in much less time, plunge our economy into massive debt. Raising taxes is not the way to fix it! When there are no more smokers, who will get it next? The non-smokers had better begin worrying!

  2. This anti-smoker movement is one that has been corrupt from the start, oppresses a minority group, and is destructive to personal rights and a free society. RWJF Anti-Tobacco Grants as of Jan 6, 2010
    How can our elected officials fall for this rubbish! The beneficiaries of this tyranny are the pharmaceutical companies, not the public!

  3. http://www.mskcc.org/mskcc/ html/12463. cfm
    This prediction tool from Sloan Kettering can assess a long-term smoker’s risk of developing lung cancer in the next 10 years based on the person’s age, sex, smoking history, and asbestos exposure.
    I used a 51 yr old female who smoked for 39 years at 15 cigarettes per day. Results: Over the next 10 years if she does not smoke the risk of developing lung cancer is 2%. If she continues to smoke her risk of developing lung cancer is 3%.
    For a smoker? A 3% chance after smoking for 39 years? These nuts would trample private property rights for that? If that smoker has only a 3% chance, does this even make ANY sense? Does it?

  4. I must wonder how the unemployed and underemployed would feel about all this money for Prohibition of a legal product.

  5. It’s gonna take $7.5 million for St. L County to promote helping stop smoking? Wow. You’d think one could do a hell of a job with a couple million. Charlie should be in 7th heaven by now.

    • Mike, do you have any basis for suggesting a lower figure would be adequate? Also, how should it be targeted? I’d like a references for a successful program and how much it cost. I believe California for one has had a very effective program which lowered smoking rates substantially.

  6. Reverend Joe Sinnett

    What a pathetic waste of money of which 75% will get spent on staff. It was once said a Fool and his money is soon parted. What fools are taxpayers to allow this type of spending on something that could be done for free. People who want to quit can and will. Those who don’t won’t unless you incarcerate them, which I’m sure is on the agenda somewhere in the future. Bet 7.5 million would feed a lot of huingry children in America or provide services for homeless Veterans. Those surrounded by your obtuse community leaders.

  7. Jason Vander Weele

    Reverend Joe Sinnett,

    The rationale in your argument is the equivalent of saying that those who wish to find God can and will do so if they want to, without the need for anyone to provide money to churches, as they are not needed to spread faith, which can be done for free.

    Just because a vast majority of people know smoking is harmful does not mean that no one needs help or education regarding the issue. Just as a drug-user who is considering suicide could likely be helped in a much greater way by a caring preacher than simply trying to get through it on his own.

    As a taxpayer, I’d much rather this money go to prevent this very costly epidemic from continuing than to a lot of other projects.

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