West Virginia’s Legislature Chose Big Tobacco Over West Virginians
The American Cancer Society Cancer Action Network is disappointed that lawmakers chose Big Tobacco over the health of West Virginians in the state budget.
LANSING, MI – Cancer patients, survivors and caregivers from across the state traveled to the capitol in Lansing yesterday to meet with their elected officials. They let their lawmakers know that with over 32% of cancer deaths in Michigan caused by smoking, Michigan can and must do better to prevent cancer by reducing tobacco use and improving access to care.
Michigan currently ranks 49th out of the 50 states and D.C. in investments in tobacco control. Advocates urged state lawmakers to prioritize funding by investing $5 million in tobacco control programs in order to change that statistic. In doing so, Michigan would take a decisive first step towards reducing tobacco use and its devastating toll on our communities.
As Big Tobacco is working hard to addict future generations with e-cigarettes and other tobacco products while also spending $323.8 million annually marketing their deadly products, the need for a well-funded fact-based tobacco control program has never been greater. An investment of $5 million annually in fact-based tobacco prevention and cessation programs would protect kids, reduce health care costs and save lives.
Furthermore, volunteers asked lawmakers to pass oral chemotherapy fairness legislation. This legislation would ensure that the out-of-pocket costs for oral and intravenous chemotherapy patients are similar. Currently, the out-of-pocket costs for some oral chemotherapy medications are higher than intravenous ones, providing an unnecessary barrier for some Michiganders.
This year, an estimated 61,910 Michiganders will be diagnosed with cancer and 21,380 are expected to die from the devastating disease. Those gathered at the capitol yesterday are calling on Michigan lawmakers to change this by taking steps to make the fight against cancer a priority.
About ACS CAN
The American Cancer Society Cancer Action Network (ACS CAN) makes cancer a top priority for policymakers at every level of government. ACS CAN empowers volunteers across the country to make their voices heard to influence evidence-based public policy change that improves the lives of people with cancer and their families. We believe everyone should have a fair and just opportunity to prevent, find, treat, and survive cancer. Since 2001, as the American Cancer Society’s nonprofit, nonpartisan advocacy affiliate, ACS CAN has successfully advocated for billions of dollars in cancer research funding, expanded access to quality affordable health care, and advanced proven tobacco control measures. We’re more determined than ever to stand together with our volunteers to end cancer as we know it, for everyone. Join the fight by visiting www.fightcancer.org.