Flavored tobacco is marketed to youths

Dear Editor,

On May 22, 2018, tobacco control advocates from all over California came together to educate our legislators on how the tobacco industry targets and markets its products to our young people by using sweet flavors. Research has found that 80% of adolescents ages 12 to 17 who reported ever experimenting with tobacco started with a flavored product.

I had the opportunity to represent the Tulare County Tobacco-Free Coalition and the Unidos Par Salud tobacco control program. As tobacco control staff for the past three years, I participated in local data collection and analysis to determine how the retail environment impacts our youth.

The Healthy Stores for a Healthy Community 2016 data collection found 73% of tobacco retailers in Tulare County sold flavored products and 64% of these stores are located near schools. To entice youth to purchase different flavored products, the tobacco industry uses brightly-colored packaging to appeal to youth and sells them individually or in smaller pack sizes to be more affordable. Because the products taste sweet and resemble candy, youth and young adults believe they are less harmful. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, nearly half of all middle and high school students using tobacco use two or more types of products like little cigars, Juuls, or electronic cigarettes. With over 15,500 e-cigarette flavors, it’s easy to see why they are so addictive to youth.

There are several solutions individual cities or the County could take to counter tobacco’s targeting of our youth, including banning the sale of flavored tobacco products or limiting the number of tobacco retailers in youth-sensitive areas, such as schools and parks. Tulare County could be the leader in the Central Valley to help prevent youth from starting to use tobacco. Sincerely,

Jennifer V. Acidera
Tulare County Tobacco-Free Coalition

The economic fix of cannabis will bring overall decline to Lindsay

Dear Editor,

Re: “Lindsay council budges on pot, still excludes retail” as published on Wednesday, July 4, 2018

In reference to the article written on July 4, 2018, wherein was stated that Lindsay council unanimously voted, (5-0) to put the taxing of pot on the November ballot; and as a resident of Lindsay, this vote was, and is a grievous disappointment!

There is a great responsibility placed upon our leaders to serve this city in the best interest of its residents as a whole, and of its well-being as a community.

The sign of a strong leader is one who remains standing on sound principles and righteous convictions of conscience in the midst of many arguments of a matter, even if one stands alone.

It’s interesting how things can be presented to the public, whether through a public forum or through articles written; but the view of the stance of leadership will always be witnessed and realized through actions in which they take.

As the saying goes, “Actions speak louder than words!”

Don’t be deceived dear people; this action taken by the city council puts the ball in our court in hopes that the vote of the people will pass; thus laying the foundation of taxing of cultivation, the taxing of said businesses, and all that entails, and of sales of pot; all of which will be established, on the books, until the door is opened to allow cannabis business into the city of Lindsay.

How can I say that? By simply reading the article, along with what councilmember Brian Watson expressed, and of the vote taken.

This would be a mere stepping-stone, laying the ground work for that closed-door to cannabis business in Lindsay, to become open.

The City of Lindsay has had their financial struggles and it is a no-brainer that the prospect of increase revenue ranging from $500,000 to $3.5 million is quite an enticement; however, at what cost?

All one has to do is look at the cities who have entered this path of partnering with cannabis business. They are not thriving. Over time, their hopes of the mighty dollar to bring about a flourishing community has come rather to a decline; which is greatly unattractive and substantially degrading of substance in their overall health of their cities.

Greed will never see you through. 

It is written: “But those who want to get rich fall into temptation and a snare and many foolish and harmful desires which plunge men into ruin and destruction. For the love of money is the root of all evil . . . “ ­—  1 Timothy 6:9-10a

I hope and pray for greater things for Lindsay and of all her people.

Patsy K. Miller

Tulare hospital board is grateful to area medical centers for support and assistance

Dear Editor,

As president and vice-president of the Tulare Local Healthcare District (Tulare Regional Medical Center), we are writing to express our deepest appreciation for the phenomenal assistance and support we have received from our area hospitals. 

Community Medical Centers has worked with us for over a year, offering support and advice, providing a temporary loan, and placing staff in Tulare to help us evaluate our needs and options. CMC has outstanding staff, facilities, and reputation. We have no doubt the organization will continue to succeed.

Kaweah Delta’s CEO personally trained our new board members when our prior management staff failed to do so. Kaweah Delta Medical Center shouldered an enormous burden from our temporary closure, and served our citizens in need of hospital care well. They continue to offer us support and advice, and we hope we will continue to communicate regularly as both districts serve the medical needs of much of our county into the future. 

Adventist Health helped us in an emergency with our pharmaceuticals, responded immediately and enthusiastically to our call for proposals, and is providing us a great opportunity to open soon and successfully serve our district with quality and competency for many years to come. We look forward to a great, mutually beneficial partnership.

TRMC’s history has not reflected a lot of cooperation with other hospitals, and we hope and trust that will change dramatically in the future. We applaud and thank sincerely these institutions and the quality staffs they have. The board, and the people we serve, is indebted to them for their great assistance.

Kevin Northcraft
Tulare Local Healthcare District

Mike Jamaica
Vice President
Tulare Local Healthcare District

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