Illinois Tobacco-Free Communities
IllinoisTobacco-Free Communities - Community Health Priority - Lung Cancer
Smoking tobacco is the single most important preventable cause of illness and death in the United States. More than 20,000 people in Illinois die each year as a result of cigarette smoking. Nationally, smoking is responsible for one of every five deaths. In fact, cigarette smoking kills more Americans than AIDS, alcohol, car accidents, murders, suicides, drugs, and fires combined.
Illinois Tobacco-Free Communities is an Illinois Department of Public Health grant-funded initiative to establish tobacco prevention and control programs to prevent tobacco use among youth, eliminate exposure to second-hand smoke, and eliminate tobacco-related health disparities.
The Illinois Tobacco Quitline is a free resource for tobacco users who want to quit for good. Certified counselors and staff at the Illinois Tobacco Quitline provide the support needed to break the habit. Qualified individuals have access to nicotine replacement products through the mail. Call toll-free 866-784-8937 (866-QUIT-YES) or visit the website www.quityes.org for assistance and qualifications.
The Smoke-free Illinois Act, effective January 1, 2008, protects the public in Illinois from the harmful effects of exposure to tobacco and second-hand smoke by prohibiting smoking in indoor public places and places of employment, including offices, theaters, museums, libraries, schools, commercial establishments, enclosed shopping centers and retail stores, restaurants, bars, private clubs and gaming facilities. Smoking is also prohibited in public conveyances like taxis and buses.
- Business owners shall not permit smoking within 15 feet of any entrance, exit, or window that open and ventilation intakes.
- "No smoking" signs are required to be posted at every entrance to a public place or place of employment. These signs are available to download on the Illinois Department of Public Health Web site at http://www.smoke-free.illinois.gov/smokefreesigns.htm .
- Full text of Smoke-Free Illinois, Public Act 095-0017 can be found at http://www.smoke-free.illinois.gov/ .
- Individuals can file a complaint at the Illinois Department of Public Health's toll-free complaint line at 866-973-4646 or online through www.smoke-free.illinois.gov/complaints.htm.
Current Policy Initiatives and Activities in Peoria County
According to the U.S. Surgeon General, there is no safe level of second-hand smoke exposure, including multi-unit housing where secondhand smoke can be a major concern for residents in neighboring apartments, outdoor public space, school campus property, indoor public places and places of employment.
Peoria City/County Health Department works in collaboration with community partners on policy initiatives and activities in the following areas:
- increase the number of smoke-free multi-unit housing polices, like apartment buildings and public housing
- increase the number of tobacco-free outdoor spaces like parks, outdoor events, and farmer's markets
- introduce and implement tobacco-free campus polices for school and college campuses
- conduct specified enforcement activities for compliance of the Illinois Smoke-free Act on behalf of the Illinois Department of Public Health.