Category: Blog

Look who’s gone tobacco-free in 2016

By on August 4th, 2016


Congratulations to the following businesses and organizations that made their properties tobacco-free since the beginning of 2016. The Capital District community is a healthier place because of their efforts.

Delmar Family Medicine
Albany Public Library
Atlas Copco
Bethesda House
Duanesburg Little League
Emmanuel-Friedens Church
Nassau Baseball Association
Planned Parenthood Mohawk Hudson
Storeaway Inc.
Union College

Schenectady County invites public input on proposed T-21 law

By on June 21st, 2016


Mark your calendars for Tuesday, July 5, 2016 @ 7:00pm and share your views on a Schenectady County law to raise the minimum age for the legal sale of tobacco products to 21. The introduction of this local law follows closely on the heels of Albany County’s adoption of a similar provision earlier this month and offers the possibility of having two contiguous counties reducing youth access to tobacco products.

Schenectady County Legislature has announced plans to hold a public hearing in the Legislative Offices, 620 State Street, 6th Floor on Proposed Local Law A-16.  
If you are a resident of Schenectady County or work in an organization that serves Schenectady County residents, you have an opportunity to be heard. Have an opinion? July 5th would be a good time to share it. If you’re unable to attend the public hearing, you can submit your comments via email or by post to:
Legislative Offices
Clerk of the Legislature
620 State St, 6th Floor
Schenectady, NY    12305

For additional information, you can access the Public Health and Tobacco Policy Center fact sheet on Tobacco-21 here or visit

Village of Altamont makes parks tobacco-free!

By on June 13th, 2016


The Village of Altamont Board unanimously adopted a resolution making village parks tobacco and ENDS-free after hearing testimony from two 9-year old residents about the benefits. Erin Burby and Kyle Efaw, 3rd graders at Altamont Elementary School, were joined by seven of their classmates at the June 7 meeting. The two students read speeches they had written as part of a classroom project assigned by their teacher, Annemarie Farrell.

Efaw highlighted the importance of protecting people from the harmful effects of secondhand smoke. He said, “It is important for a park to be about staying healthy. . .If people are smoking in a park around kids and the kid could breathe in second hand smoking and can get sick.” He also talked about the impact on kids of seeing other people smoking. “Seeing adult or older kids smoke might make other kids want to smoke and it is bad for you. 60% of kids who smoke started by the age of 14 years old.”

Burby spoke of the harms resulting from tobacco litter. “The smoker could leave the cigarettes on the ground in the park and animals (and sometimes kids) could eat them.”

We couldn’t have said it better.

Congratulations to all of Ms. Farrell’s students for their activism and to the Altamont Village Board for being responsive to their young constituents’ opinions.

See photos and read more in the Altamont Enterprise here.





T-21 to become law in Albany County

By on June 8th, 2016


Albany County Executive Dan McCoy signed a law today raising the age for the legal sale of tobacco products in the county from 18 to 21. The law includes traditional tobacco products, liquid nicotine and Electronic Nicotine Delivery Systems (ENDS) such as e-cigarettes.

Albany County joins the five New York City counties, along with Suffolk and Chautauqua Counties, which have also adopted T-21 laws.

The law, which passed 24-13 in the county legislature last month, will take effect immediately after it is filed with the Secretary of State.

The Albany County Legislature will be hosting a press event Thursday, June 9 at 4pm to thank the groups and people who helped T-21 become law.

Where:  112 State Street, 1st Floor Cahill Room, Albany NY

When:  Thursday, June 9, 4pm

Who:   Albany County Legislators, American Heart Association, American Cancer Society, American Lung Association, Capital District Tobacco-Free Coalition, among other local partners. Community members are welcome and encouraged to attend.

County Executive McCoy’s Press Release here.
Times Union article here.

What’s wrong with this picture?

By on May 31st, 2016


Today, World No Tobacco Day, the Capital District Tobacco-Free Coalition is launching the #SeenEnoughTobacco statewide campaign to spark community action to protect children from the more than half a million dollars worth of tobacco marketing they encounter every day in New York State. The more tobacco marketing kids see, the more likely they are to smoke.

The campaign calls attention to the impact of tobacco marketing on children through the use of video, social media, digital advertising and community education that includes a Jack and Jill (and Tobacco)” storybook describing children’s encounters with tobacco marketing in convenience stores. Provocative images creatively combine cigarettes with common children’s items, like crayons and a birthday cake, to mimic the ways in which tobacco marketing presents itself to children.

On the website,, we urge parents and other community members to help raise the alarm about the manipulative tactics of the tobacco industry that appeal to youth, resulting in the next generation of replacement smokers. Here’s how you can help.

  • Visit and sign the petition to end tobacco marketing to kids.
  • While on the site, share it on social media and/or forward this email to family, friends and colleagues.
  • Follow us on Facebook and share our messages in your social media circles.

Thank you for your continued support to create a tobacco-free community.

Duanesburg Little League Knocks Tobacco Out of the Park!

By on May 18th, 2016


Congratulations to Duanesburg Little League for making their entire facility tobacco-free! CDTFC joined them for their opening weekend to celebrate. 






Here’s CDTFC’s Theresa Zubretsky rallying the fans and players to shout out “Play Hard, Breathe Easy.” They needed little encouragement. . .the decibel meter will never be the same.











We got some help from some of the players to pitch “Play Hard, Breathe Easy” t-shirts out to the crowd. Wow! These kids have got some great throwing arms. Thanks, guys!



Albany County Legislature Votes “YES!” to Raise Legal Age for Tobacco Sales to 21!

By on May 10th, 2016


Last night in a 24-13 vote, the Albany County Legislature voted to increase the legal minimum age for the sale of tobacco products to 21, following in the footsteps of more than 150 cities in ten states, including New York City, the New York State counties of Chautauqua and Suffolk, and the states of Hawaii and California.

Thank you to the Albany County Legislature for voting “Yes” to a proven community health strategy that will reduce youth smoking.

Learn more about T-21 at And follow local coverage of Albany County here:
Albany Times Union

Make your opinion matter on April 26!

By on April 13th, 2016


Mark your calendars for Tuesday, April 26, 2016 @ 7:15pm and share your views on an Albany County law to raise the minimum legal age for sales of tobacco products to 21.

The Albany County Legislature will hold a public hearing in the Legislative Chambers, Albany County Courthouse, Eagle Street, Albany, NY on Local Law C for 2016 (announcement here). A copy of the proposed law can be viewed here.

If you are a resident of Albany County or work in an organization that serves Albany County residents, you have an opportunity to be heard. Have an opinion? April 26th would be a good time to share it. If you’re unable to attend the public hearing, you can submit your comments in writing to the Clerk of the Legislature at:

Office of the Albany County Legislature
Clerk of the Legislature
Harold L. Joyce Albany County Office Building
112 State St., Room 710
Albany, NY    12207

For additional information, you can access the Public Health and Tobacco Policy Center fact sheet on Tobacco-21 here

Planned Parenthood Mohawk Hudson named Tobacco-Free Champion

By on January 27th, 2016

Planned Parenthood Mohawk Hudson CEO Kim Atkins (far left) and Board Chair Joyce Elliott (far right) accept Champion award along with members of PPMH's Tobacco-Free Committee including (L-R) Emma Enness, Bryan Beckman,  Kristin Fiato-King, Larry Brodsky, Gail Pliscofsky, and Laura Gallery.

Congratulations to Planned Parenthood Mohawk Hudson (PPMH) for being named a New York State 2015 Tobacco-Free Community Champion. As of January 1, 2016, all PPMH properties became tobacco-free, including ten health clinics located in eight NYS counties, a decision that promotes tobacco-free living and health equity for their employees and patients.

The success of our tobacco-free efforts relies on partners like PPMH to help build healthy, tobacco-free communities where people live, learn, work and play. Planned Parenthood Mohawk Hudson provides quality and comprehensive reproductive health care to more than 20,000 men and women every year. In combination with the education and training programs PPMH provides to diverse groups, their community reach is extensive and profound. By going tobacco-free, PPMH prevents harmful secondhand smoke exposure, raises awareness of the impact of tobacco use on health, and makes it easier for tobacco users who want to quit to do so successfully, an important step in promoting health equity.

Pictured in the photo: Planned Parenthood Mohawk Hudson CEO Kim Atkins (far left) and Board Chair Joyce Elliott (far right) accept Champion award along with members of PPMH’s Tobacco-Free Committee including (L-R) Emma Enness, Bryan Beckman,  Kristin Fiato-King, Larry Brodsky, Gail Pliscofsky, and Laura Gallery.

The Community Champion distinction was awarded on behalf of five Advancing Tobacco-Free Communities contractors in the communities in which the PPMH clinics and other properties are located: The Capital District Tobacco-Free Coalition (Albany, Rensselaer and Schenectady Counties); Glens Falls Hospital Living Tobacco-Free Initiative (Saratoga, Warren and Washington Counties); Advancing Tobacco-Free Communities of Hamilton, Fulton and Montgomery CountiesAdvancing Tobacco-Free Communities of Delaware, Otsego and Schoharie Counties; and BRiDGES Advancing Tobacco-Free Communities of Oneida, Herkimer and Madison Counties.

Local colleges make Tobacco-Free Dean’s List

By on September 25th, 2015


On Thursday, the American Cancer Society released its 2015 New York State Dean’s List Report which gives grades to all New York State colleges on their efforts to develop and implement campus-wide tobacco-free policies. In the Capital District, nine colleges scored an A for having a comprehensive tobacco-free policy in place and for taking measures to maximize compliance.  Congratulations and thank you to the local colleges that have provided their employees and students with a healthier environment in which to work and learn.

Below is a list of local colleges along with their scores. Click on the links to learn more about their tobacco-free policies.

Albany College of Pharmacy and Health Sciences   A
Albany Law School A
Albany Medical College B
College of Saint Rose A
Excelsior College C
Hudson Valley Community College A
Maria College A
Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute A
Sage Colleges A
Schenectady County Community College A
Siena College A
SUNY University at Albany D
SUNY Polytechnic Institute  I (Incomplete or actively planning)
Union College  I – (has announced they will go tobacco-free on July 1, 2016)