Voting Yes on Proposition B is Missouri’s chance to break old habits. Our state has never invested money into smoking cessation and prevention, but Prop B’s 73-cent tobacco tax increase would change that by directing 20 percent of the revenue from the tax to these lifesaving programs and giving people the resources they need to quit.
Research shows that this proposed tax increase would prevent more than 40,000 kids from becoming addicted adult smokers and would cause more than 33,000 adult smokers to quit.
The Black Health Care Coalition knows first-hand how important it is to fight cancer, heart disease and other lethal conditions caused by tobacco. One in four of our clients who are at-risk for heart disease are smokers. Proposition B will provide smoking cessation services that our clients desperately need.
In addition, a significant investment from the tax will go toward prevention programs for children and youth in our community. For decades tobacco companies have targeted our children with billboards and other canning advertisement. On Nov. 6, we will have the power to fight back.
Furthermore, the Black Church has demonstrated a strong commitment to respond to the tobacco and cancer epidemic in our community. Sixteen black churches have prepared themselves to offer smoking cessation services. If we vote yes, Proposition B would make it possible for the church and other health care agencies to access resources necessary to help our community members who are addicted to nicotine.
A yes vote on Prop B would save more lives from cancer, heart disease and invest in a brighter future for our children. Voting Yes on Prop B is the right choice for the African American community.