Cross-posting · Quit Tips


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CDC’s Office on Smoking and Health seeks ex-smokers
to be in Tips From Former Smokers campaign!
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s (CDC) Office on Smoking and Health are recruiting additional candidates to be considered for an upcoming national education campaign, Tips From Former Smokers (Tips). This campaign is similar to previous campaigns seen here, real people who have had life-changing, smoking-related health problems will be featured. They are conducting a national search to find people with compelling stories who are willing to participate in their campaign.

The CDC and OSH are seeking people from all backgrounds, and are particularly looking for candidates who are of Asian descent. All applicants must be tobacco-free for at least 6 months.

They are looking for ex-smokers who:

·         Have or have had colorectal cancer that was linked to cigarette smoking (ages 30–65).
·         Have or have had macular degeneration that was linked to cigarette smoking (ages 40–65).
·         Used cigars with cigarettes or used cigarillos or little cigars with or without cigarettes, thinking cigars, cigarillos and little cigars were healthier than cigarettes and developed a serious health condition while smoking (ages 20-60).
·         Used e-cigarettes or smokeless tobacco for at least a year while continuing to smoke some cigarettes; and
·         Thought using e-cigarettes or smokeless tobacco to cut back on some cigarettes would be good for your health; and
·         Despite cutting back, you were later diagnosed with a serious health condition.
All individuals should be comfortable sharing their story publicly and be able to articulate how their smoking-related condition has changed their life. The association between smoking and their condition must be clear, and candidates’ physicians will be contacted to verify that smoking contributed to the condition.

The CDC and OSH would like for you to help distribute this flyer (below). Please feel free to email it to anyone who might be willing to help CDC recruit for this campaign. The flyer can be posted in public areas or shared with anyone who may know people who fit the criteria above.

Feel free to print and share! click to enlarge
Feel free to print and share! click to enlarge
If you have questions, please send them to the CDC representative, Crystal Bruce,
Please put “Recruitment Question” in the subject line.
Quit Tips

Cigarette butts: why are we still throwing them on the ground?!?!

DMT headshot

Daniella Matthews-Trigg
Program Associate
Attempting to air my pet peeves in a constructive way 



A survey released in April by Legacy shows that while “more than 88 percent of Americans surveyed think that cigarette butts are an environmental concern, more than 44 percent of those polled who had ever smoked admit to having dropped a cigarette on the ground and nearly 32 percent have dropped a cigarette out of a car window.”

UM HELLO!? I would bet that the majority of the people surveyed would NEVER even think of dropping a plastic bottle on the ground, or throwing wrappers out of their car window. So why don’t people feel like cigarette butts are the same thing? Why does dropping a used cigarette not “count” as littering?

In an increasingly health and environmentally conscious world, cigarette butts remain one of the only socially acceptable forms of littering left.

Oh, and did i forget to mention? “Cigarette butts contain carcinogens that can leach into soil, and chemicals that are poisonous to wildlife, threatening to contaminate water sources.” 

And, “Contrary to popular belief, cigarette filters are not biodegradable. They’re made from cellulose acetate, a plastic that absorbs tobacco “tar” and eventually breaks down in the environment, but never loses its toxicity and can poison essential links in the aquatic food chain.”

Watch this awesome video by Legacy for some serious perspective: (pun intended)

So, What can we do?


1. Hold ourselves accountable– Don’t throw cigarette butts on the ground! THE END! EW!

(Need help quitting? Check out FREE counseling and resources! )

2. Make sure that people who smoke have access to proper receptacles to dispose of butts- Talk to owners of local bars and businesses and encourage them to provide trash cans or cigarette disposal places outside their venues. Encourage your community to provide trash cans and cigarette-butt receptacles in parks and on shopping streets.

3. Remind others– A gentle “Oh, I think there’s a trash can over there” will remind people not to throw their butts on the ground.

4. Volunteer with your local awesome tobacco-control folks/Public Health groups/environmental groups– to pick up litter in your community

5. Be a trendsetter– Carry a small plastic bag (and a plastic glove for the ickiness factor) with you when you’re in the outdoors to pick up butts and other micro trash that you encounter.

6. Support policy that addresses this issue from a environmental and social standpoints-Check out this grant program for communities to reduce toxic pollution, The Cigarette Butt Pollution Project, an article on the case for an environmental policy on hazardous cigarette waste, and Policy Tools by the Tobacco Control legal Consortium. 

7. Educate yourself and others– Spread the word! 

These toxins don’t just go away…they leach into the ground or are ingested by animals

Check out these other websites and resources:

The Leave No Trace Center for Outdoor Ethics teaches people of all ages how to enjoy the outdoors responsibly, and is the most widely accepted outdoor ethics program used on public lands. (Check it out at

Make sure there are receptacles for cigarette butts

Download Legacy’s factsheet on cigarette litter

A pocket ashtray! A little bit icky perhaps, but super responsible!

Billions of Pieces of Toxic Trash are Leaching Deadly Chemicals

No butts: The campaign to reduce, recycle cigarette waste

The Environmental Impact of Cigarette Butt Waste Factsheet

Quit Tips

Action Alert – Do you know an LGBT person who has quit smoking? Help us share their story…


Gustavo Torrez
Program Manager
The Network for LGBT Health Equity
Do you know an LGBT person who has quit smoking? Help us share their story…

As you may have seen through our press statement today, CDC officially launched the Tips 2 Campaign this morning. We were pleased to report the inclusion of an LGBT focused ad, and ad buys to reach our community. In an effort to showcase the campaign ads, the National Networks will be hosting a series of stories and tips from our own communities, that will be hosted on our joint website

This is where we need your support…

We are looking for LGBT people who has successful quit smoking to share their stories on our joint site.  Over the Next week the website will launch with collected stories to date, and will be updated with stories as they are submitted.

If you have a friend who has quit, or maybe folks that have been through your cessation classes that you would like to showcase please fill out the attached form as soon as possible and send to either Christine Corrales with Appeal, or directly back to the Network

You can send the form directly to them, or you can call and fill it out really quick if they are interested in being showcased on the site. This is our opportunity to show our community that we can break the nicotine habit together, while sharing valuable tips for other looking for help as they work to quit.

Click the link below to automatically download the brief quick and simple form to fill out:

NN Website_Tips 2 Content Form

Thank you all for your continued support in ensuring LGBT representaiton in mainstreem tobacco control efforts.

Quit Tips · Resources · Updates



Gustavo Torrez
Program Manager
The Network for LGBT Health Equity
inclusive of LGBT tailored ads and ad buys.
Please distribute the statement widely as we celebrate this historic release!

 TFI logo

CONTACT:     Chris Viveiros
March 28, 2013


The Fenway Institute applauds the United States Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s (CDC) Office of Smoking and Health (OSH) for including lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender (LGBT) people among the populations featured in their new ‘Tips From Former Smokers’ tobacco cessation campaign. The campaign features compelling messages from people affected by tobacco use. Other populations featured include African-Americans, Latinos, and Native Americans/Alaskan Natives.

cdc_tips2_ellie_mag_previewOne of the ‘Tips from Former Smokers’ ads features a lesbian who suffers from asthma triggered by working in a smokefilled bar. Recently released data from the CDC shows that LGBT people smoke cigarettes at rates that are nearly 70% higher than the general population. The Fenway Institute and other organizations have been educating health agencies about the need for LGBT inclusion in public health campaigns for several years.  The Fenway Institute’s Network for LGBT Health Equity was involved in consultations with the CDC to help augment the diversity in the ‘Tips From Former Smokers’ ads.

“Tobacco use is one of the biggest health issues impacting the LGBT community,” said Scout, PhD, Director of the Network for LGBT Health Equity. “Right now it’s still historic to see LGBT inclusion in a national health media campaign. I hope other health agencies follow CDC’s lead and start to make it routine.”

The ‘Tips From Former Smokers’ campaign will include ad buys tailored to populations that have smoking disparities, access to tobacco quitlines in multiple languages, and online materials customized for special populations. Expect to see the ads run on TV, radio, print, and online through June. During 2012, the Tips From Former Smokers campaign resulted in 200,000 additional quitline calls across the nation.

The Network for LGBT Health Equity is a community-driven network of advocates and professionals looking to enhance LGBT health by eliminating tobacco use, and other health disparities within our communities. We are one of six CDC-funded tobacco disparity networks and a project of The Fenway Institute in Boston. We advance these issues primarily by linking people and information to advocate for policy change.

For more than forty years, Fenway Health has been working to make life healthier for the people in our neighborhood, the LGBT community, people living with HIV/AIDS and the broader population.  The Fenway Institute at Fenway Health is an interdisciplinary center for research, training, education and policy development focusing on national and international health issues. Fenway’s Sidney Borum Jr. Health Center cares for youth and young adults ages 12 to 29 who may not feel comfortable going anywhere else, including those who are LGBT or just figuring things out; homeless or living on the streets; struggling with substance use or abuse; sex workers; or living with HIV/AIDS.


Action Alerts · Quit Tips

National Media Collaboration, A Gay Editor’s Journey to Become Smoke-Free…

Gustavo Torrez
Program Manager
The Network for LGBT Health Equity
Deglamorizing Tobacco in the Media

We are in an era where there is too little LGBT Media coverage of tobacco control efforts, a definite lack of LGBT Educational opportunities about our disparity, and a clear need of education around smart cessation options to help our communities break the nicotine addiction. In Pictures Worth a Thousand Words: Noncommercial Tobacco Content in the Lesbian, Gay, and Bisexual Press (Smith EA, Offen N, Malone RE, 2006) we understand that “The predominant message about tobacco use in the LGB press is positive or neutral; tobacco is often glamorized”. History has shown us that tobacco use is not only glamorized but normalized within our community. LGBT people smoke cigarettes at rates 68% higher than the general population, and editors still continue to support pro tobacco imagery.

This week the Network has embarked on one of the largest media collaborations to date. We are pleased to announce our newest partnership with Bill Browing, in his quest to break the nicotine addiction. If you don’t know, Bil Browing is the Founder & Editor in Chief for the Bilerico Project, the 4th largest LGBT blog in the country. Bill has decided that for his 40th birthday he is going to celebrate by quitting smoking. As an Editor in Chief of an LGBT Blog he is going public changing the social norms of tobacco glamorization in the media, and has reached out to the Network for support.

Click here to read the introductory blog by Scout, and leave comments for Bil to show your support. Pass this on to your Network, share his updates through your social media channels, encourage others to follow and make comments as well. We have an amazing opportunity to follow a gay mans journey, in a very public way, and we hope his story inspires others to follow suit. United we can show him there is a community rallying around him, and together we can encourage the LGBT communities to break the nicotine addiction. Please take a moment to comment and share the blog today, the time is now to take a stand and combat the glorification of tobacco in LGBT media, while supporting a gay editor in his journey to become tobacco free.

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PopCtr Mtg: Panel Discussion on Probability and Non-Probability Methods

Scoutby Scout
Director, Network for LGBT Health Equity
A project of The Fenway Institute in Boston, MA

SCIENCEBABBLE ALERT – This is a meeting for scientists, despite my efforts, some of this may get technical.

411 on the issue

Probability sampling = getting a group of people for your research that is statistically proven to be a random selection from the full population of interest, thus the statistics support you being able to draw conclusions for the full population based on the info from this random subgroup. (Like if 50% of your probability sample of LGBT people parachute, you can confidently say 50% of all LGBT people parachute.)

Non-probability sampling = any non-random sample of people. (Like if you do a survey at pride, it’s a non-probability sample.) Unfortunately, the statistics then do not support being able to generalize these findings to the full population, because there’s a chance bias might have snuck in. (Like, maybe pride participants aren’t as closeted as other LGBT people, so even if 50% of your sample are in LGBT parachuting clubs, you can’t say 50% of all LGBT people are in such clubs.)

Why’s this a big issue? Probability sample data is the gold-standard for drawing conclusions, but we have much less of this for LGBT people, mostly because LGBT measures aren’t included on the monster federal surveys that are the big probability studies.

Panel Members:

  • Dan Kasprzyk, Ph.D. Vice President of NORC (which I realize is so well known as one of 2 fanciest survey shops that his bio doesn’t even say what NORC stands for… so just know, NORC=surveys)
  • Melissa Clark, Ph.D. Brown University Department of Community Health
  • Margaret Rosario, Ph.D.
  • Jeffrey Parsons, PhD. Hunter University

The Panel

Dr. Kasprzyk led the panel off talking about some of his interesting experiences as part of the Institute of Medicine committee for the recent LGBT report. He emphasized that the choice of probability or non-probability might really not be as important as the reporting and impact of any well-designed study, regardless of the methods chosen. Then he moves onto talking about the federal surveys. “If the federal gov’t added LGBT measures to the American Community Survey, then allowed oversampling, that alone would allow the community to target populations, whether it’s regional, city, rural, you name it, and we’d be much better off. But we have to go beyond NHANES, you have to get on other surveys, NHIS and especially the Labor Force Survey would be very valuable.” He emphasized how important it was to get measures on these large full-probability surveys, “because otherwise you remain invisible.”

“Probability data is very important, it is the gold standard, in Washington, that’s what people are going to listen to. I think the real advancement in healthcare policy comes from really pushing hard with the federal government to have these questions on those surveys, and that point cannot be diminished. I think it’s really important that we actually stay focused on the federal government and become part of that health policy debate.” Dr. Kasprzyk

Dr. Clark followed (that’s Melissa to you and me) and led off by echoing all of Dr. Kasprzyk’s points. She says “”That’s usually how I end every talk I give about sexual minorities, I say ‘please help us get these questions added.'” She talked about her experience at Brown University and how much she’s been working to try to get the non-LGBT researchers to include LGBT measures. Through this effort, she’s managed to take one of the IOM report recommendations and institutionalize it, “Now when there’s a new study, people have to either include sexual minorities or explain why they are not.” Kudos to Melissa, let’s hope NIH follows suit!

Next up was Margaret Rosario. She warns us that while probability samples are important, most of our real explanatory data will come from non-probability samples because they are so much cheaper they have more latitude to go much deeper into issues, explore causal models, etc. For her, the bottom line is either approach can be useful, it’s often an issue of cost, if we have the chance to do the higher costs full-probability samples, excellent, if not, let’s just do excellent non-probability studies. Lastly she also weighs in on the importance of getting LGBT measures on the large surveys, “For the probability studies, please please, whatever we can do to get questions on there, do be able to identify the population as best we can, we should definitely do that.”

The panel was rounded out by Jeff Parsons. He talked about how it always seems there’s a flavor of the day at NIH for the newest rage for sampling, some of which are just never really viable in the field. “You can’t just count every 9th person who goes in the bar and pull them for the study, it doesn’t work.” Tonda Hughes from UIC echoes that sentiment, noting that the popular method, Respondent Driven Sampling, has never worked for her in samples of women.

As the discussion opens up to audience comments, there’s an interesting suggestion from Jim McNally, a director at ICPSR (the Intra-university Consortium of Political and Social Research, probably the largest data library in the country). one of the University of Michigan (ICPSR) scientists… “We recommend people work to create a small strong full probability sample and then ask the same questions you have on the federal surveys. That way you have policy strength to compare to the federal questions.”

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Center for Population Research in LGBT Health Holds Annual Convening

Scoutby Scout
Director, Network for LGBT Health Equity
A project of The Fenway Institute in Boston, MA

My Non-Sampling Error Experience

Ok, I’ve fled from the very exciting Netroots Nation conference to get back to Boston because today and tomorrow mark the 3rd annual convening of one of The Fenway Institute’s other major initiatives, the Center for Population Research in LGBT Health. Not only does this mean I get to hang with some of my farflung friends for two days, not only does it mean the largest gathering of trans health researchers I’ve seen, not only does it mean I get to meet many upcoming researchers involved in the mentorship program, but right now, it’s also the biggest meeting about LGBT research that occurs each year.

I came a little late, so am jumping in as the head of one of the most prestigious survey centers in the country, Dan Kasprzyk of NORC, weighs in on issues related to LGBT sampling. (He was just talking about a non-sampling error experience.) So, I’m going to focus more on the actual content now… but just wanted to start off by giving you a little bit of context to the meeting, because this is a really cool project.

Abstract of Center for Population Research in LGBT Health Project

Previous studies have shown that sexual and gender minorities have higher prevalence of life-threatening physical and mental health conditions, experience significant barriers to health care quality and access, and face substantial threats to quality of life. Population-based research is necessary to more fully understand the causes of these disparities, so that effective responses can be developed. The proposed project’s long-term objective is to create a sustainable capacity for population studies and the translation of results into practice models for sexual and gender minorities. This 5-year effort will be conducted by the Fenway Institute, supported by the Research and Evaluation Department of Fenway Community Health (FCH), a Federally-Qualified Community Health Center. FCH provides comprehensive primary health care and mental health services annually to 11,000 neighborhood residents and students in nearby colleges and to LGBT persons, primarily from Greater Boston. Approximately 55% of patients self-identify as LGBT, reporting sexual or gender minority behavior and/or identity. The project has the following specific aims to develop the infrastructure for population research regarding the health of sexual minorities: (1) develop and support a multidisciplinary faculty to advance the study of sexual and gender minority populations, (2) create a shared research library, to include selected population-based datasets and findings from a large clinical dataset, and (3) disseminate the products of our work through the internet, a monograph, and peer-reviewed journal articles.  A team of researchers with diverse qualifications has been assembled to address these specific aims, with the assistance of a National Advisory Board of experienced population scientists and technical experts. The input and collaborative work of these researchers will lead to a common framework for multidisciplinary scholarship that advances understanding of sexual minority populations and how social, cultural, and institutional factors influence their health. This work will provide a foundation for culturally competent treatment approaches and behavior change models for sexual minorities.

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Breaking News! NY Hospitals Announce Mandatory LGBT Cultural Competency Trainings

Scoutby Scout
Director, Network for LGBT Health Equity
A project of The Fenway Institute in Boston, MA
Reporting from Bellevue Hospital, NY

I’m down here in NYC and very, very happy to be at the press conference where New York City Health and Hospitals Corporation just announced mandatory LGBT cultural competency training for all their 37,000 employees! They also debuted the excellent new LGBT cultural competency video created by our friends at the The National LGBT Cancer Network. The Cancer Network created the full training to be administered to every NYC hospital employee, both the trainings and video are available for purchase or replication. (Don’t forget, the National LGBT Cancer Network is also our collaborator in our brand new LGBT Wellness NYC Marathon team.)

To have the head of all NY public hospitals reinforce that LGBT cultural competency trainings are a mandatory part of good healthcare is historic, let’s hope other cities and hospitals soon follow! See their press release here.

L to R: NYC Councilman Daniel Dromm; Liz Margolies, ED of National LGBT Cancer Network; NYC HHC President Alan D. Aviles, NYC Deputy Mayor Linda Gibbs, and HHC doctor.

Even HHS Secty Sebelius weighed in on what a big deal this is:

“I applaud the New York City Health and Hospitals Corporation for its leadership in ensuring LGBT patients are treated with the respect and dignity we all deserve. HHC has offered a path to a fairer America and HHS looks forward to seeing other efforts from care providers from around the country toward that same goal.”

We were also live-tweeting from the event with all play-by-play tweets on @lgbttobacco and @lgbthlthequity with some major help from friends on the ground @cathyrenna and @RennaComm, so check out updates there.

The video shown features the stories of several LGBT people who have experience bias in hospitals and in the healthcare system. You may have already seen an article about these trainings in Huffington Post, and an excerpt of the powerful video can be seen here:

Let’s hope the news spreads fast and other hospital systems follow suit.

See more press about this in:

  1. Advocate Magazine: NYC Hospitals Adopt LGBT Competence Training
  2. New Hospital Program Addresses LGBT Health Woe
  3. New York Times Blog: For Public Hospital Employees, New Training on Gay Patients
  4. NY1: New Program Attempts To Eliminate Barriers For LGBT Patients
  5. Rainbow Access Initiative: Breaking News! NY Hospitals Announce Mandatory LGBT Cultural Competency Trainings
  6. University of Arkansas for Medical Science: Center for Diversity Affairs to Sponsor LGBT Cultural Competency Strategies Webinar
Cross-posting · Quit Tips

New Ask-the-Expert Resources on Lung Cancer Screening: Legacy Videos

Compiled cross-posting by Emilia Dunham, Program Associate

A new four-segment “ask-the-expert” video series, available online at, is devoted to helping smokers understand their risks for lung cancer.  Legacy, through an unrestricted educational grant from Genentech, developed the videos and related resource materials to educate former and current smokers on the lung cancer screening process.  The videos feature Dr. James Mulshine of Rush University Medical Center and real-life patients: one who asks questions about CT spiral scans and the other who shares his firsthand experience.  A companion online discussion group in the EX Community is also available for cancer survivors who are quitting smoking.

Includes Tips to Keep the Weight Off:

Legacy, through an unrestricted educational grant from Genentech, has developed a series of short “ask-the-expert” videos designed to educate current and former smokers on the process of lung cancer screenings.  The videos are now posted online at

The four-video series provides expert commentary and personal insight from a former smoker about CT scans as a means of earlier detection of lung cancer. Specifically, Dr. James Mulshine of Rush University Medical Center provides an overview of spiral CT scans and talks with a patient about the screening process.  Also, another patient describes his firsthand experience of having a CT scan.

The video segments are supplemented by downloadable fact sheets that answer questions about the scan and promote conversations that smokers should have with their clinicians about accessing spiral CT scans.

Another supportive element is a new online discussion group, Cancer Survivors Supporting Each Other to Quit Smoking, which provides a place to share stories and support one another in quit smoking attempts. To join this group, visit and click on The EX Community.

Legacy is excited about the opportunity to offer these resources.  We encourage you to share this information with your colleagues. To assist, I have provided a short “article” you can publish through your organization’s website or newsletter. If you would like to read the press release, please click here.

Please share, and contact Legacy’s Karen Martin with question: