Monday, March 23, 2009

March 23 Meeting: Fighting for Air

Prof. Karl Kim

Click here to listen.

Speaker: Beth-Ann Kozlovich: is HPR talk show’s executive producer and host of Town Square and Director of Development, American Lung Association of Hawaii.

ALAH 2009-2009 Advocacy
ALAH Programs
Lung Disease in Hawaii

Beth-Ann Kozlovich, American Lung Association

Kozlovich, an asthma sufferer herself and whose father died of lung cancer, started her talk with some very scary statistics: lung cancer is the #1 killer in Hawaii, asthma is #2. 154,000 people in Hawaii have lung disease. Her Association provides services to address the prevention of breathing disorders and the promotion of lung health.

One of its most successful programs, the Teen Cessation Program, helped drop Hawaii’s teen smoking rate from 21% to 9.7% from 2000-2008. Since smokers start smoking as teenagers, this program focuses on 7th-12th graders mostly in the schools. Their Asthma Education and management program targets school children, school personnel and parents.

ALA has successfully advocated against smoking in pubic places, and forbidding smoking within 20 feet from workplace buildings. Prisoners can no longer smoke and report how much better they feel; however their guards still smoke.

Of great concern to the organization that gets most of the funding for their 13 programs from the Hawaii Tobacco Settlement Fund, is HB1731 now making its way through the legislature. The state administration wishes to balance the budget by “reallocating for 2 years from 07/01/09 to 06/30/2011, distribution of moneys in the Hawaii tobacco settlement special fund, including depositing 25% into the state general fund.” For information, go to