Cancer Advocates Storm Ohio Capitol

Cancer Patients and Survivors Traveled to Columbus to Urge Legislators to Make Cancer a Priority

April 5, 2017

Cancer Patients and Survivors Traveled to Columbus to Urge Legislators to Make Cancer a Priority

Volunteers Met with Ohio Lawmakers to Ask for Support for Increased Tobacco Taxes, Increased Tobacco Cessation and Prevention Funding, Funding for the Breast and Cervical Cancer Project and Palliative Care.

Columbus, OH– April 5, 2017 – Nearly 100 cancer patients, survivors and caregivers from across the state traveled to the State Capitol in Columbus today and met with Ohio’s lawmakers about the need for increased tobacco taxes, increased tobacco cessation and prevention funding, funding for the breast and cervical cancer project and palliative care. The visit was part of the American Cancer Society Cancer Action Network’s (ACS CAN) annual Day at the Capitol.

The American Cancer Society Cancer Action Network (ACS CAN) will continue to work with lawmakers and advocates though the budget process on its tobacco and breast and cervical cancer funding asks. ACS CAN will also be working with Representative Sarah LaTourette when she reintroduces her legislation from last general assembly that would create the Palliative Care and Quality of Life Interdisciplinary Council and would also establish the Palliative Care Consumer and Professional Information and Education Program.

Specifically, the ACS CAN Ohio volunteers asked the legislature to:

•    Increasing the cigarette tax by $1.00 per pack, match the other tobacco products tax to the cigarette tax level   and invest $35 million in tobacco preventing and cessation programs.
•    Maintain funding at FY 2017 levels of $1.1 million per year for the breast and cervical cancer project.
•    Improve the quality of life of cancer patients by creating a Palliative Care and Quality of Life Advisory Council.
“Although we have been working on tobacco issues for many general assembly’s now, tobacco is still the health epidemic that lays in plain sight,” said Jeff Stephens, Ohio government relations director. “The asks our volunteers are making today are proven public policy solutions to combat the toll of tobacco in Ohio.”

In Ohio, 68,180 people are expected to be diagnosed with cancer this year, and 25,430 will die from the disease. Those gathered at the Capitol today are calling on Ohio lawmakers to change this by taking steps to make the fight against cancer a priority.

ACS CAN, the nonprofit, nonpartisan advocacy affiliate of the American Cancer Society, supports evidence-based policy and legislative solutions designed to eliminate cancer as a major health problem. ACS CAN works to encourage elected officials and candidates to make cancer a top national priority. ACS CAN gives ordinary people extraordinary power to fight cancer with the training and tools they need to make their voices heard. For more information, visit


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Media Contacts

Michelle Zimmerman
Senior Specialist, Division Media Advocacy