Broken Promises to 
Our Children A State-by-State Look at the 1998 State Tobacco Settlement 
16 Years Later Scroll down for the report Despite the huge sums they get from the tobacco settlement and billions more they collect in tobacco taxes, the states continue to shortchange tobacco prevention and cessation programs that are proven to save lives and money.

Broken Promises to Our Children:
A State-by-State Look at the 1998 State Tobacco Settlement 16 Years Later

Since the states settled their lawsuits against the major tobacco companies in November 1998, we have issued annual reports assessing whether the states have kept their promise to use a significant portion of their settlement funds – estimated at $246 billion over the first 25 years – to attack the enormous public health problems posed by tobacco use in the United States.

 

Despite the huge sums they get from the tobacco settlement and billions more they collect in tobacco taxes, the states continue to shortchange tobacco prevention and cessation programs that are proven to save lives and money.

 

In the current budget year, Fiscal Year 2015, the states will collect $25.6 billion from the settlement and taxes. But they will spend only 1.9 percent of it – $490.4 million – on programs to prevent kids from smoking and help smokers quit.

 

This year’s report challenges the states to do more by shining the spotlight on Florida, which has cut high school smoking to just 7.5 percent – one of the lowest rates recorded by any state.  Among its efforts to reduce tobacco use, Florida has a long-running and well-funded tobacco prevention program.

 

Our report projects the national and state-specific savings – both in lives and money – if each state cut youth smoking to Florida’s low rate. If the national high school smoking declined from the current 15.7 percent to 7.5 percent, we project it would:

 

  • Prevent 7 million kids alive today from becoming adult smokers
  • Save 2.3 million kids from premature, smoking-caused deaths
  • Save $122.1 billion in future, tobacco-related health care costs

 

This report is issued by the Campaign for Tobacco-Free Kids, American Heart Association, American Cancer Society Cancer Action Network, American Lung Association, Robert Wood Johnson Foundation and Americans for Nonsmokers’ Rights.

 

Download the Full Report

(PDF, 1.7 MB)

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Map: State Funding for Tobacco Prevention

States that are spending 50% or more of CDC recommendation on tobacco prevention programs.

States that are spending 25% - 49% or more of CDC recommendation on tobacco prevention programs.

States that are spending 10% - 24% of CDC recommendation on tobacco prevention programs.

States that are spending less than 10% of CDC recommendation on tobacco prevention programs.

Other key findings include:

 

  • The states currently provide just 14.8 percent of the tobacco prevention funding recommended by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Only two states – North Dakota and Alaska – currently fund tobacco prevention programs at the CDC-recommended level when both state and federal funds are included. Only five other states – Delaware, Wyoming, Hawaii, Oklahoma and Maine – provide even half the CDC’s recommended funding.

  • Tobacco companies spend $18 to market tobacco products for every $1 the states spend to reduce tobacco use.

  • States have slightly increased tobacco prevention funding from the $481.2 allocated last year. But current funding is still down nearly a third from the $717.2 million spent in fiscal 2008.

 

There is more evidence than ever before that tobacco prevention and cessation programs work to reduce smoking, save lives and save money. In addition to Florida’s success, one study found that during the first 10 years of its tobacco prevention program, Washington state saved more than $5 in tobacco-related hospitalization costs for every $1 spent on the program.

 

The states are sacrificing the health of their children and costing taxpayers billions by refusing to properly fund tobacco prevention efforts and ignoring the mountain of evidence that these programs work. It’s time to dedicate ourselves to creating the first tobacco-free generation.

Infographics

Click on the images below to view and download them in full size.