Montana receives three “F” grades for tobacco control

Missoula, MT (KGVO-AM News) — The American Lung Association has released its class of tobacco control for Montana, and the results are not good.

KGVO News spoke to Carrie Nyssen, senior director of advocacy, American Lung Association in Montana, about the three “F” grades, an “A” and a “B” the state received. She expressed regret that the notes are still needed after such a long campaign to end smoking in the US

Montana receives three “Fs”, an “A” and a “B” for Tobacco Control

“It’s amazing to me that we’re still dealing with this problem, but that’s why the American Lung Association publishes an annual report called State of Tobacco Control,” Nyssen began. “And this report takes a look at five evidence-based policies that states can enact, and when they do, they will see an impact on tobacco use in their state.”

These five policy areas fund government tobacco prevention programs; state tobacco taxes; smoke-free workplace laws; Coverage of and access to tobacco cessation services and cessation of sales of flavored tobacco products.

A small percentage of tobacco-related revenue actually goes to prevention

“Montana brings in $101 million in tobacco revenue annually,” she said. “These are dollars coming in from collected tobacco taxes and dollars coming in from the tobacco companies’ Framework Settlement Agreement in 1995. States have sued the tobacco companies and a settlement has been reached, giving states dollars from tobacco companies to mitigate the harm their deadly product is causing.”

She provided details on one of Montana’s “F” notes.

“We know that the higher the cost of the tobacco product, the more it encourages current users to quit. Montana’s current rate is $1.70, so it gets an F grade,” she said. “And the other ‘F’ we have is flavored tobacco products. We know about this youth epidemic and the use of electronic cigarettes or vaping devices, and we know that the appeal of these products to us is the taste.”

They say there is a bill in Helena that is trying to allow smoking in the workplace

The ‘A’ grade came from Montana’s smoke-free workplace law; However, Nyssen said that Helena is now also being attacked.

“The ‘A’ comes from smoke-free air, which is really exciting,” she said. It is good that all public places and workplaces are smoke-free. However, I will say that there is a bill in Helena to circumvent this and allow smoking in establishments again. So we’re really concerned about this, not only because of the harm to health that has led to secondhand smoke, but that just re-smoking indoors is really a step backwards when it comes to public health.”

Click here for the American Lung Association report for Montana.

READ MORE: Scroll to see what the big headlines were in the year you were born

Here’s a look at the headlines that have captured the moment, spread the word, and helped shape public opinion over the past 100 years.

LOOK: What Are the Odds Of These 50 Totally Random Events Happening To You?

Stacker took the guesswork out of 50 random events to determine how likely they are to actually occur. They got their information from government statistics, scientific articles, and other primary documents. Read on to find out why expectant parents shouldn’t anticipate due dates — and why you should worry more about dying on your birthday than turning 100.