Meagan Neis from the University of Wisconsin-Madison, is joining the Wisconsin Wins project and visiting tobacco license holders to find out which businesses are complying with the law and which ones may need to provide their employees with more training regarding tobacco sales. Neis will be working in six counties: Oneida, Forest, Lincoln, Florence, Vilas, and Price.
WI Wins was launched in the spring of 2002 as part of a comprehensive approach to preventing youth access to tobacco. With the help of local retailers, illegal sale rates in the six counties above have dropped from 22% in 2012 to 9 % in 2013. According to Neis, “Wisconsin Wins is an outstanding program. I am excited to work with the youth and play an active role in the culture change surrounding tobacco in the Northwoods. My goal is to help the sale and usage rate of tobacco reach 0%.”
The CDC states that on average, smokers die 10 years earlier than nonsmokers and that cigarette smoking causes more than 480,000 deaths each year in the United States. This is about one in five deaths! Yet, every day in the United States 3,600 young people between the ages of 12 and 17 years initiate cigarette smoking. When clerks make a difference to decrease youth access to tobacco products, Wisconsin wins.
For more information regarding the Wisconsin Wins program contact Maria Skubal, Oneida County Tobacco Coordinator at 715-369-6110.