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Author Archives: Arendtm

PHAI Takes Cigarette Companies to Court

 The Public Health Advocacy Institute (“PHAI”) announced today that its newly formed Center for Public Health Litigation has filed lawsuits against two major tobacco companies and several local distributors on behalf of the families of two former smokers who suffered devastating disease from smoking cigarettes. “This is the first time a non-profit organization has directly… Read the full article >

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Leaked TPP investment chapter shows US tobacco control rules at risk

WASHINGTON — An ambitious 12-nation trade accord pushed by President Obama would allow foreign corporations to sue the United States government for actions that undermine their investment “expectations” and hurt their business, according to a classified document. Read more>

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Hollywood and Tobacco: New Spotlight on Smoking At The Movies

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE March 24, 2015 Hollywood and Tobacco: New Spotlight on Smoking At The Movies Launch of Revamped UCSF Website Ranks Actors, Directors, Top 10 Movies by Their Use of Tobacco    UC San Francisco is launching a revamped Smokefree Movies website that offers the public unusual insight into Hollywood’s role in the global… Read the full article >

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New Global Fund to Help Countries Defend Smoking Laws

Bloomberg Philanthropies and the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation announced on Wednesday that they had started a global fund to help low- and middle-income countries fight legal challenges to their smoking laws by the tobacco industry. The fund is modest, at least so far, with a total of $4 million from the two charities. But Michael… Read the full article >

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ASH participates in the World Conference on Tobacco or Health 2015

This week, several representatives of Action on Smoking and Health (ASH) will be attending the World Conference on Tobacco or Health in Abu Dhabi. WCTOH is a five-day scientific conference where presenters highlight the latest developments in tobacco control and the efforts around the world to reduce tobacco use.  This year, the conference theme is “Tobacco… Read the full article >

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Resources: Criminal Liability for Tobacco Executives

ASH Resources Blog: If Drug Dealers Can Be Found Criminally Liable, Can Big Tobacco? Description: Drug dealers can and have been charged with murder or manslaughter when death results from the drugs they sold. This same logic could apply to Big Tobacco. Quote:  The inevitable question is then- Do you think that tobacco companies could… Read the full article >

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Plain Packaging for Tobacco Will Become the Global Norm

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE Contact: Megan Arendt Office: 202-659-4310 Email: arendtm@ash.org PLAIN PACKAGING FOR TOBACCO WILL BECOME THE GLOBAL NORM But will the U.S. be last? WASHINGTON, D.C. – March 12, 2015 – Yesterday, Britain’s House of Commons overwhelmingly approved a law requiring plain packaging for tobacco products, just one day after Ireland’s president signed into… Read the full article >

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Breaking News: MPs back standardised cigarette packaging

MPs have voted in favour of introducing standardised packaging for cigarettes in the UK. It means from 2016 every packet will look the same except for the make and brand name, with graphic photos accompanying health warnings if the House of Lords also approves the move. The Irish Republic passed a similar law earlier this… Read the full article >

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Last Week Tonight: Irish Plain Packaging Cigarettes

John Oliver of HBO’s Last Week Tonight continued his original episode on the tobacco industry with this response. Watch here>

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Temporary injunction bars man from lighting up inside his Washington home after neighbors sue

WASHINGTON –  A temporary order by a Superior Court judge is keeping a man from smoking inside his home in the District of Columbia. WJLA-TV (http://bit.ly/1BrlPLl ) reports that Edwin Gray’s next door neighbors in northeast Washington have filed a civil suit claiming they’re being harmed by smoke that sneaks into their home through a… Read the full article >

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Corrective Ads Still Missing

In 1999, the U.S. Department of Justice sued several major tobacco companies including Altria, R.J. Reynolds and Lorillard in a civil suit under the Racketeer Influenced and Corrupt Organizations Act (RICO) for fraudulent and unlawful conduct.  In 2006, after seven years, millions of documents, and a nine month trial in which 84 witnesses testified, the… Read the full article >

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Time for the New “Normal” in Tobacco Packaging

Plain Packaging Should be Universal Yesterday, Ireland became the first country in Europe and the second country in the world to pass legislation requiring plain packaging for tobacco products. Under the new rule, all forms of branding will be banned, including logos and colors. The packages will be covered with graphic warning labels and uniform… Read the full article >

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Ireland Passes Tobacco Plain Packaging Law

Dublin: Ireland has became the  second country in the world to pass a law introducing mandatory plain packaging for tobacco products, prompting the tobacco industry to threaten legal action. It follows Australia’s introduction of similar plain packaging legislation in 2012. Under Ireland’s new rules all forms of branding, including logos and colours will be banned… Read the full article >

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#StopTobaccoTactics

Earlier this year Tel Aviv University’s School of Marketing, under pressure from the Israel Cancer Association, canceled an event sponsored by Philip Morris International. Unfortunately, victories like this for public health are few and far between. The tobacco industry continues to use corporate social responsibility (CSR) to market its deadly products. These schemes range from… Read the full article >

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Senator Warren calls Philip Morris on Abusive Trade Lawsuit.

By Senator Elizabeth Warren The United States is in the final stages of negotiating the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP), a massive free-trade agreement with Mexico, Canada, Japan, Singapore and seven other countries. Who will benefit from the TPP? American workers? Consumers? Small businesses? Taxpayers? Or the biggest multinational corporations in the world? One strong hint is… Read the full article >

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Statement from Executive Director on the 25th Anniversary of Smoke-free Skies

Smoke-free in the Skies, but not on the Ground Just 25 years ago, smoking was a pervasive norm. People could smoke at work, in restaurants, and even on airplanes. Non-smokers were exposed to second hand smoke often and for extended periods of time. Twenty five years ago today, a huge step was taken to help… Read the full article >

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Statement from ASH on the 25th Anniversary of Smoke-free Skies

The absence of smoking on commercial airliners is something we all now take for granted.  But it wasn’t always that way. The ban on smoking was the culmination of years of effort by many individuals and public health organizations fighting an industry that had held sway in the US Congress seemingly forever.  About a year… Read the full article >

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What Flying Was Like Before the Smoke Cleared

If you think the air travel experience generally stinks now, consider what it was like before smoking was banned on domestic flights 25 years ago. Tracy Sear, a flight attendant with US Airways, was looking over some Facebook posts from colleagues recalling those bad old days when a third or more of passengers on any… Read the full article >

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Tobacco Giants Battle New Ads Painting Them As Liars

WASHINGTON (AP) — Never underestimate the staying power of big tobacco. In 2006, U.S. District Judge Gladys Kessler ordered the nation’s largest cigarette makers to publicly admit that they had lied for decades about the dangers of smoking. The basis for the punishment: Testimony from 162 witnesses, a nine-month bench trial and thousands of findings… Read the full article >

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Florida Bill Seeks to Shield Tobacco Industry from Lawsuits

The powerful cigarette industry reignited Florida’s tobacco wars Wednesday with a one-sentence bill that would strip away the right of thousands of Florida victims from collecting millions in damages…. But for Bob Wilcox, 49, a Miami-Dade police lieutenant in the homicide bureau, the bill is an “outrageous” attempt to shield an industry that deserves to… Read the full article >

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Japan Tobacco threatens Ireland over plain packaging

One of the world’s largest tobacco firms has told the Government to immediately halt plain packaging legislation in the Dáil or face a High Court claim for damages. JTI Ireland, owner of the Benson & Hedges and Silk Cut brands, has told Ministers James Reilly and Leo Varadkar that it will take legal action if… Read the full article >

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John Oliver Gives PMI a Lesson in Marketing

Comedian John Oliver took on Philip Morris International (PMI) Sunday night on his HBO show “Last Week Tonight.” ASH Policy Director Chris Bostic was privileged to see the taping in person. It is a hilarious and poignant piece, and the PR folks at PMI must have woken up dazed and confused today. Oliver focused his attention… Read the full article >

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John Oliver takes on tobacco industry

Last Week Tonight with John Oliver exposed Big Tobacco’s international bullying tactics to target new and existing customers with their deadly products. ASH supported their researchers in putting together this episode. Join the conversation online using #JeffWeCan Watch the episode below. Read ASH’s Response here>

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England bans smoking in cars with children

Drivers in England will be banned from smoking in their cars if they are carrying children as passengers. The move, which will become law on 1 October, follows a similar ban in Wales and aims to protect young people under 18 from second-hand smoke. Scotland is also considering introducing a ban. Anyone found flouting the… Read the full article >

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Cambridge increases tobacco purchase age to 21; bans e-cigs from restaurants

The Cambridge City Council passed last week a series of controversial amendments to the Cambridge Tobacco Ordinance, including an increase in the purchase age to 21 years old and limits on smoking in public parks and use of e-cigarettes, our partners at Wicked Local reported Tuesday. The new ordinance won’t be implemented until June 1… Read the full article >

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