PRESS RELEASE: CDC Spreads Tips From Former Smokers Campaign to Reach LGBT Communities

April 7,  2015
For Immediate Release
Dr. Scout
(954) 765-6024


CDC Spreads Tips From Former Smokers Campaign 

to Reach LGBT Communities



Ft. Lauderdale, FL – April 7, 2015 –  This month CDC is launching its 4th annual wave of the popular and effective “Tips From Former Smokers (Tips)” campaign, with its largest ever LGBT media outreach component. CDC is promoting Tips ads to LGBT communities across the country to supplement exposure to ads airing nationally.”LGBT people spend an estimated $7.9 billion dollars each year on smoking, yet we still think of it as a personal choice; it’s time we realize we smoke at such high rates because of systematic targeting by the tobacco industry” said Dr. Scout, the Director of LGBT HealthLink. “We’re deeply pleased CDC is doing this level of marketing to reach the LGBT population, because the tobacco industry has been doing it for a long time.”

The popular Tips campaign has spurred an estimated 1.64 million Americans to make a cessation attempt. New information from the Surgeon General’s 50th anniversary report on tobacco (#SGR50) not only acknowledges the disproportionate impact of smoking on the LGBT communities, but also links tobacco use to higher rates of additional cancers and for the first time, diabetes as well. This integration of LGBT communities into tobacco control programming has become more routine every year. The Acting Surgeon General made statements specific to the LGBT impact upon release of last years’ report, and prior Tips campaign ads and media buys have had a measure of activity tailored to the LGBT population. This year’s campaign has the most extensive LGBT media buy to date. CDC’s Office on Smoking and Health has long funded an LGBT tobacco disparity network, currently LGBT HealthLink. This is one of eight disparity networks that serve to provide CDC and their state grantees resources to assist reaching populations disproportionately impacted by tobacco and cancer.


“We’re incredibly pleased with the federal outreach to LGBT communities and states are reaching out more as well. When you call 1-800-QUITNOW you’re very likely to be asked if you’re LGBT, because we urged it; you’re very likely to get a counselor who is trained in LGBT cultural competency, because we provided the training; and in some states you’ll even see locally tailored outreach campaigns too,” notes Dr. Scout.


“LGBT communities smoke at rates that are about 50% higher than their heterosexual/straight counterparts. CDC is very concerned about this elevated smoking rate and committed to making sure tobacco control campaigns like Tips really do help reduce that disproportionate burden on LGBT communities,” said Tim McAfee, M.D., M.P.H., senior medical officer in CDC’s Office on Smoking and Health.


LGBT tailored Tips ads will run from now through Pride month and into mid-August in a variety of regional, national and digital media sites, as well as on social media. Access electronic versions of the ads, as well as videos, podcasts, and LGBT smoking facts at:


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LGBT HealthLinka program of CenterLink, links people and information to spread LGBT wellness best practices across state health departments, federal policymakers, and community organizations. LGBT HealthLink produces a weekly roundup of top LGBT wellness stories that’s accessible every Monday on Huffington Post Gay Voices Wellness page. LGBT HealthLink is one of eight CDC-funded tobacco and cancer disparity networks.


CenterLink – was founded in 1994 as a member-based coalition to support the development of strong, sustainable LGBT community centers. A fundamental goal of CenterLink’s work is to help build the capacity of these centers to address the social, cultural, health and political advocacy needs of LGBT community members across the country. CenterLink continues to play an important role in addressing the challenges centers face by helping them to improve their organizational and service delivery capacity, access public resources and engage their regional communities in the grassroots social justice movement.


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