According to Colorado QuitLine, Tobacco kills more members of the gay and lesbian communities than HIV, illegal drugs, vehicle accidents, suicides and murders combined.
I learned many tobacco companies advertise heavily to the LGBT community. I experienced this first hand by reviewing some of the literature provided to our youth.
Based on my experience about 2/3, possibly more, of the youth in my program smoke.
With all of these factors combined I felt I had a responsibility to do something. I decided to start a youth smoking cessation group. At first I was naive and thought it would be simple to get youth on board to kick the habit -boy was I wrong!
I have tried for months to get youth to contemplate quitting: hanging up posters (serious and funny), sharing statistics, posting images on quitting smoking and having one on one conversations. Nothing worked.
I reached out to members of the community to ask for help on how to get youth engaged. I learned this is an issue everywhere; getting youth engaged is a very difficult task.
Regardless of my fruitless efforts so far I feel this is an important issue.