State Senator Charles J. Fuschillo, Jr. (8th Senate District), author of New York State’s Clean Indoor Air Law, and Assemblyman David G. McDonough (19th Assembly District) today visited Levy-Lakeside Elementary School in Merrick to speak to children about the dangers of tobacco.
"When tobacco companies look to attract new smokers, children are the number one target. We must teach children at a young age that smoking is a dangerous and deadly addiction, which is why it is so important to say ‘no’ to tobacco," said Senator Fuschillo, a member of the Senate’s Health Committee.
During the presentation, Senator Fuschillo and Assemblyman McDonough showed the children household products, such as rat poison, nail polish remover, ant & roach spray, moth balls, and batteries, that have some of the same chemicals found in tobacco. Students also engaged in a "true/false" tobacco quiz, which helped them learn about some of the common facts of tobacco use.
At the end of the program, Senator Fuschillo gave "no smoking pledge packets" out to the students. The packets inform children about the harmful effects of smoking, and contain a pledge that they can sign along with their parents to promise to commit to a healthy, tobacco free lifestyle.
Youth smoking remains a serious problem in New York State. According to the Campaign for Tobacco Free Kids, almost 25,000 New York State children under the age of 18 become new daily smokers each year. In addition, children buy or smoke over 36 million packs of cigarettes each year in New York State alone.
Photo caption: Senator Fuschillo (right) and Assemblyman McDonough (left) show Levy-Lakeside students that some of the chemicals that arein batteries and moth balls are also found in cigarettes.
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