World No Tobacco Day (WNTD), celebrated each year on May 31. According to the World Heath Organization (WHO), the goal of WNTD is to contribute to protecting present and future generations not only from the devastating health consequences due to tobacco, but also from the social, environmental and economic scourges of tobacco use and exposure to tobacco smoke. Tobacco is a first rate killer. It is the single most preventable cause of death globally and is currently responsible for 10% of adult deaths worldwide. The global tobacco epidemic kills nearly 6 million people each year, of which more than 600,000 are non-smokers dying from breathing secondhand smoke. Unless we do something, the epidemic will kill more than 8 million people every year by 2030. More than 80% of these preventable deaths will be among people living in low-and middle-income countries.
Specific goals of the 2014 WHO WNTD campaign are that:
- governments increase taxes on tobacco to levels that reduce tobacco consumption;
- individuals and civil society organizations encourage their governments to increase taxes on tobacco to levels that reduce consumption.
Again this year as part of our World No Tobacco Day activities, the Center will be doing an online media project to inform and engage the public on the dangers of tobacco and secondhand smoke as well as some of the community-based initiatives that are going on in Omaha and across the country. We hope that you will join us for this day of action by participating in the online dialogue on Facebook, Twitter, and of course right here on our Blog. Become a fan of our Facebook page. Follow us on Twitter @UNMCCRHD @MOTACOmaha and engage with us using the hashtag: #WNTD2014!