Conferences · social media · Summit · Tobacco Policy · Uncategorized · White House

We’re working toward a tobacco-free future for LGBT communities!

Here at the National LGBT Cancer Network Summit in NYC, we wanted to get in on the Surgeon General Report excitement! #SGR50photo

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Farewell & Godspeed To Our Hero Terrie Hall

ScoutScout, Ph.D.
Director, The Network for LGBT Health Equity

This sad news came today from the CDC’s Office of Smoking and Health:Screen Shot 2013-09-17 at 1.02.05 PM

We are deeply saddened to announce the passing of Terrie Hall – a true American hero. Terrie appeared in ads run by CDC for the Tips From Former Smokers media campaign, which encouraged several  million smokers to try to quit. Terrie died on September 16th from the effects of the cancer caused by the cigarette smoking she began in high school. Treating her cancer required multiple surgeries over the years, including the loss of her voice box, leaving a hole in her throat.  This summer the cancer spread to her brain, and despite radiation and surgery, the cancer spread further.

 Terrie wanted to save people from having to go through the sickness and surgeries she endured.  She decided to let smokers and young people see her disfigurement and know what caused it, so that they would stop smoking – or better still, never start.  She spoke at schools and before other small groups. But the Tips from Former Smokers campaign gave Terrie her biggest platform.  More than a hundred million Americans saw her ads on television, the Internet, in magazines, on billboards and at bus stops — and many of them decided to try to quit smoking.  Strangers came up to her in drugstores and hugged her to thank her for inspiring them to quit.  By her willingness to show and tell people what cigarette smoking had done to her, Terrie saved thousands of American lives.

Tim McAfee, MD, MPH, Director, CDC’s Office on Smoking and HealthTerrieHall

I had the occasion to meet Terrie recently as she was getting a medal of commendation from the Surgeon General for her leadership in smoking cessation. Of every ad CDC has ever run, Terrie’s was the most compelling story, and we all knew how many people she affected with her famous lines “If you’re going to smoke, take a video of yourself so your grandchildren can see you before you sound like this.” Terrie made it her mission to show the reality of smoking’s impact, and she saved many lives in doing so. Deep bow to you our friend, you will not be forgotten, farewell & godspeed.

Resources · social media · Tobacco Policy

Upcoming webinar about CDC’s unveiling of “Talk with your doctor” sub-campaign- register today!

New Network Logo Symbol 3-2011
The Network for LGBT Health Equity 
Bringing you awesome Webinars and keeping you in the know! 


A new feature of the CDC’s Tips From Former Smokers campaign was unveiled this week— “Talk With Your Doctor” (TWYD). The goal of this phase of the campaign is to engage health care providers and encourage them to use Tips as an opportunity to start a dialogue with their patients who smoke about quitting. It is also meant to serve as a reminder for smokers to talk with their healthcare providers about effective methods to help them quit.

As you may remember from our press release about the Tips campaign, “One of the ‘Tips from Former Smokers’ ads features a lesbian who suffers from asthma triggered by working in a smoke filled bar. Recently released data from the CDC shows that LGBT people smoke cigarettes at rates that are nearly 70% higher than the general population.” This new phase of the campaign is yet another amazing way to reach out to our communities about this huge disparity!

On Thursday, June 13th, The Network will be teaming up with the Gay and Lesbian Medical Association (GLMA) and CenterLink to bring you a webinar discussing the “Talk With Your Doctor” campaign, and the impact that it will have on the health of LGBT communities.

Join us at 2pm EST by registering HERE!

TTYD Campaign Webinar Flyer

Monthly Updates · Staff/Program Updates


New Network Logo Symbol 3-2011

The Network for LGBT Health Equity
 The time has come: Apply to be a part of our dynamic Steering Committee!
Applications due by June 3rd, 2013

The Network for LGBT Health Equity is now accepting applications to fill four positions on its 13 member Steering Committee!

The purpose of the committee is to provide multidisciplinary input and guidance on activities for the Network. Members will participate by sharing information regarding tobacco and other LGBT health disparity opportunities, providing input on National Network efforts, and considering strategic policy enhancements that further LGBT health disparity work at their organizations.


  •  Attend regularly scheduled phone meetings (generally once or twice a month maximum)
  • Attend one in-person meetings per year (paid for by the Network)
  • Review and give feedback on policy, direction, and strategic planning of Network Activities
  • Strategize effective ways to increase Network visibility, organizational outreach, and membership
  • Identify and increase the engagement of subgroups within the LGBT community (i.e., youth, rural, elder, etc)
  • Support and enhance the goals and objectives of the Network in a changing environment
  • Engage agency/coalition groups on pertinent issues/opportunities and report back to the Committee

If you are interested in applying for the committee, the following is required (please send CV/Resume and Statement of Interest to

The Youth/Young Adult Nomination process is slightly varied. 

If you are  between 18-24 years old and would like to apply to be on the committee, click here to fill out the Youth/Young Adult Steering Committee Application form online. Youth/young adults can also apply through the general nominations process (candidacy will not be affected by either application) and follow the same guidelines by submitting the following:

All Nominations must be submitted on or before Monday, June 3rd, 2013 by 3PM EST

To: Subject: Steering Committee Nomination

You will receive a confirmation email within 2 working days of your email nomination. If you do not receive a confirmation email within 2 working days, please resend and call 617.927.6452 to ensure delivery. If you are submitting a nomination on the due date and have not received a confirmation by 4PM EST please call 617.927.6452 before 5PM EST to resend or confirm delivery. Nominations received after 6/3/2013 at 3PM EST will not be accepted.
We look forward to reviewing your applications. Please feel free to contact us with any questions!
Thank you,
Network Steering Committee and Staff
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.


National Partners Meeting… View Of The Future in Tobacco Prevention & Control

Gustavo Torrez
Program Manager
The Network for LGBT Health Equity
National Partners Meeting

Scout and I are in Atlanta for the yearly National Partners Meeting. With 70 National Partners in the room, todays agenda is really focusing on collaborations and priorities in tobacco prevention and control. Dr. Tim McAfee opened the morning with a “View Of The Future”.

Dr. McAfee shared his Tobacco Control “To Do” List, which highlighted the following:photo

  • Sustaining National Tobacco Control Programs
  • Deeming and Product Regulation
  • National Media Campaigns
  • Health Care System integration
  • National Policy Goals
  • Aggressively Addressing Health Disparities/Equity Issues

While Aggressively Addressing Health Disparities/Equity Issues was the last on his list, it was the first item he mentioned when addressing his “To Do” list. There was a lot of discussion this morning around reducing the stall, and focusing on Priority Populations, including low SES communities and LGBT people. We continue to thank CDC and some of our National Partners for continuing to include LGBT communities in their work. There is still a lot of work to be done and with the new findings from CDC’s National Adult Tobacco Survey finding that 32.8% of LGBT people nationally smoke cigarettes; 12.2% smoke cigars/cigarillos/small cigars; 6.1% and 38.5% report using any tobacco we have to continue to advocate for more collaboration, coordination, and partnerships to effectively reduce this growing health disparity affecting our communities. The data is real, LGBT people smoke cigarettes at rates 68% higher than the general population and that our overall tobacco use is 50% higher among our community.

I am happy that there is a lot of talk about disparity inclusion and look forward to the future as more efforts take place to ensure comprehensive inclusion of LGBT communities on the local, state and national level.

Data · Resources · Tobacco Policy



FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE                                        
September 20, 2012    

Contact:     Chris Viveiros
617.927.6342 / 617.721.7494                                                                                      


Report Marks Historic First Release of National Surveillance Data on LGBT Tobacco Use

A CDC (United States Centers for Disease Control and Prevention) analysis of data from 2009-2010 National Adult Tobacco Survey published in the American Journal of Public Health (AJPH) showed that with the exception of pipes, tobacco use was significantly higher among LGBT respondents when compared to the general population.   The survey found that 32.8% of LGBT people nationally smoke cigarettes; 12.2% smoke cigars/cigarillos/small cigars; 6.1% and 38.5% report using any tobacco.  Among heterosexual/straight respondents, those rates fell to 19.5% for cigarettes; 6.6% for cigars/cigarillos/small cigars; and 25.2% for any tobacco use.

An abstract of the APJH report is available here, where American Public Health Association (APHA) members can download a PDF of the full report.  Members of the press who would like a copy of the report should contact the APHA at or 202.777.2509.

“These data provide the first national benchmark of adult LGBT tobacco use and we applaud the Office of Smoking and Health at CDC for their leadership in LGBT integration and data collection,” comments Dr. Scout, The Director of The Network for LGBT Health Equity.  “Unfortunately, these findings  confirm the bad news that LGBT people smoke cigarettes at rates 68% higher than the general population and that our overall tobacco use is 50% higher.” said Scout, PhD, Director of The Network for LGBT Health.

“It’s clearer than ever that tobacco use is one of the largest single health burdens on the LGBT community,” Scout continued. “On a daily level, this means smoking and secondhand smoke is taking our health and too often, our lives. I look forward to the day when every tobacco control program includes LGBT tailored work and every tobacco industry marketing program doesn’t.”

“The American Lung Association is happy to see that this report contains specific information on LGBT tobacco use. As we stated in our 2010 report on LGBT tobacco use, Smoking Out a Deadly Threat – Tobacco Use in the LGBT Community, it’s important that this type of data be collected among the LGBT community so we can target programs and funding appropriately to reduce the burden of tobacco use among this community and all disproportionately affected communities,” said Bill Blatt, the Director of Tobacco Control Programs at The American Lung Association.

“The LGBT communities have been advocating for health data collection for so long.” reports Terry Stone, the Executive Director of Centerlink, the national association of LGBT community centers, “It’s great to finally see some results from that work. Even if the news is bad, it’s better than being invisible.”

The 2009 – 2010 National Adult Tobacco Survey is a national landline and cell phone survey of adults aged 18 years and older, to estimate current use of any tobacco; cigarettes; cigars, cigarillos, or small cigars; chewing tobacco, snuff, or dip; water pipes; snus; and pipes. We stratified estimates by gender, age, race/ethnicity, education, income, sexual orientation, and US state.

The Network for LGBT Health Equity at The Fenway Institute 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.

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.


social media

WIN! CDC gets in on pride fabulosity

The Network for LGBT Health Equity
Makin’ sure you see the COOL stuff

Exciting news! You know the CDC’s Tips from Former Smoker’s campaign? Well, in honor of pride month (whooooo!), the CDC has come out with a very cool graphic specifically targeted to the LGBT community:

When the CDC first reported out to the tobacco disparity networks (we are one of these!) on their historic $40M tobacco control ad campaign, they didn’t mention anything about tailored media. As most of you know, LGBT smoking rates are through the roof, and most disparity populations also have disproportionate rates around tobacco: For example, Black/African-Americans have higher mortality rates, Asians are more likely to smoke the more acculturated to U.S. they get, Latinos have access to care problems that magnify the impact, and on, and on. The idea that the CDC wouldn’t use tailored ads in their never-before, humongous ad campaign was baffling… tailored marketing is how the tobacco industry built these disparities in the first place.

We urged them to include tailored media for all, including LGBT (We also urged them to buy ads in the LGBT blogs, which we hope might still roll out more in year 2).

Well, we’re happy to say not only have they done a few buys in LGBT media, but they’ve also rolled out this fabulous social media tailored ad! You can also check it out on the CDC tobacco free facebook page and on twitter at @CDCTobaccoFree!

Great job CDC 🙂

For more information and stats on smoking in the LGBT community, click HERE.

Tobacco Policy · Uncategorized

Update! CDC To Launch National Tobacco Education Campaign this Thursday!

By Daniella Matthews-Trigg
Program Associate
CDC To Launch National Tobacco Education Campaign this Thursday

This Thursday,The CDC Office of Tobacco and Health will be launching their new educational campaign, called “Tips From Former Smokers”. The campaign will underscore the immediate health effects of smoking, and profile people who suffer from these health effects.

Today, the CDC held an informational call to tell people about the upcoming campaign and answer questions.

The campaign will include ads for television, public transportation and in select publications- including those that cater especially to LGBT audiences! The television ads will profile people with Buerger disease, Asthma, throat cancer as well as people that have suffered from heart attacks and strokes. There will also be some inspirational Public Service Announcements about people who have quit after smoking for many years. The ads officially start on Monday, March 19th and will run for 12 weeks, so stay tuned!

When asked about the proximity of the campaign launch to the release of the Surgeon General Report and the potential lack of youth focus, a line from the executive summary of the Surgeon General report was quoted- “There also is strong evidence that media ads designed for adults also reduce the prevalence of smoking in youth” (Chapter 6), and that the CDC felt that this campaign was the “most efficient way to achieve effects”.

The representatives from the CDC also spoke about how they will be providing technical assistance to state Quitlines who are worried that they will be overwhelmed when the campaign hits. Additionally, they would love to be informed throughout the course of the campaign about the response that the ads are getting- both positive and negative, and can be sent to:



by e.shor

The discussion of HIV has “traditionally” been centered around gay men in the LGBTQI community, but in the last ten years we have found more information on the intersections of HIV with communities of color, transgender folks (mostly transgender women, but not exclusively), and people over the age of 50. I mention these populations because they do not necessarily get a lot of press time with HIV research and prevention…and they should.

Robert Valadéz from the Gay Men’s Health Crisis in NYC gave some really helpful information about HIV transmission and trends in adults over 50. This is a growing body of literature and there is more and more community support for prevention and interventions. Here are some things we learned about:

In 2005, Persons Aged 50 and Older accounted for (CDC 2007):

  • 15% of new HIV/AIDS diagnoses
  • 24% of persons living with HIV/AIDS (increased from 17% in 2001)
  • 19% of all AIDS diagnoses.
  • 29% of persons living with AIDS.
  • 35% of all deaths of persons with AIDS.

So…these are some startling statistics. I am excited that we are talking about the jump in prevalence  from 17% (2001) to 27.4% (2007) for older adults that are 50+. This is a community that is overlooked so often in regards to sexual health education and prevention because for some reason we don’t like about older folks having sex. Well it is clear that this social stigma about sex among 50+ people is manifesting in some unfortunately public health issues, including growing rates of HIV and STI transmission. Let’s strip back a little of the stigma around sex among 50+ people and starting showing some respect to the folks who laid our histories.

CDC. HIV/AIDS Surveillance Report, 2005. Vol. 17. Rev ed. Atlanta: U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, CDC; 2007:1–54.