Each year 45,000 Black people die from tobacco related diseases due in large part to the fifty-plus years of pernicious and methodical tobacco industry targeting of the African American community with menthol cigarettes. As cities and counties across the country began to enact local public health policies to restrict the sale of menthol cigarettes, Reynolds American, Inc. (Newports) has sponsored town hall meetings and radio spots to "help" Black communities consider the unintended consequences of protecting their communities from these deadly products.
Reynolds American Inc. (RAI), perhaps one of the most lethal profilers of Black men is sponsoring these town hall meetings in our churches with leaders such as Rev. Al Sharpton, Ben Chavis, former US Congressman Kendrick Meek of Florida, the Law Enforcement Action Partnership (LEAP), and the National Organization of Black Law Enforcement (NOBLE). These meetings falsely purport that efforts to protect Black children from the tobacco industry will lead to the criminalization of our community.
This is a serious complex issue that merits conversation and education but Newport cigarettes has no place at the table. These federally adjudicated racketeers (Racketeer Influenced Corrupt Organization) still think they own the Black community and they are simply trying to protect "their turf."
Tune in to this webinar that will debunk the rhetoric, hear how the tobacco industry has historically used African American leaders to thwart public health policies that would protect the Black community, and learn what you can do to stop them.
Please join the African American Tobacco Control Leadership Council
Carol McGruder, Co-Chair
Dr. Phillip Gardiner, Co-Chair
Dr. Valerie Yerger, Founding Member