The California Tobacco Control Program has set the goal to end the commercial tobacco epidemic throughout the state by 2035. Commercial tobacco products are the top cause of preventable premature deaths in our state. It is critical that we address tobacco, because it is not only a public health issue, but a social injustice that disproportionately burdens California’s disadvantaged populations. If those of us working in tobacco control are to put an end to our state’s commercial tobacco epidemic, we must also be prepared to put an end to the pervasive presence of the tobacco industry and its products in communities most impacted by tobacco-related health disparities and the disproportionate exposure to harms from secondhand smoke.
The LOOP recognizes that there are entrenched disparities in current laws and public policies, and in our public and private institutions, not only throughout our state but our nation. The LOOP also recognizes there is much work to be done to effectively reach and engage California’s priority populations and help them embrace the “Endgame.” Therefore, The LOOP is committed to supporting efforts of other CTCP funded projects and their non-traditional partners to identify, learn from and enhance their unique strengths and wisdom while addressing the potential challenges that could interfere with the state’s priority populations benefiting fully from the adoption, implementation, and impact of Endgame policies. We aim to help ensure that none of California’s underserved communities will be left behind for the tobacco industry to exploit as “bystanders” of the Endgame. We also acknowledge the sovereign rights of American Indian tribes in the state of California and are committed to working with tribes and tribal entities to ensure they are a part of this vital planning process.