HEALTH

End All Smoking! Hispanics Join Surgeon General in Call

A person smokes outside his place of work in Belfast, Northern Ireland, Monday, April, 30, 2007.  A smoking ban  in all public places has come into effect from Monday in Northern Ireland.  (AP Photo/Peter Morrison)

A person smokes outside his place of work in Belfast, Northern Ireland, Monday, April, 30, 2007. A smoking ban in all public places has come into effect from Monday in Northern Ireland. (AP Photo/Peter Morrison)

Top Hispanic health leaders are hailing a recent Surgeon General Report that says there is no safe level of exposure to cigarette smoke.

The report by Dr. Regina Benjamin, which is entitled How Tobacco Smoke Causes Disease, says when you inhale smoke from cigarettes – either directly or through secondhand smoke – you inhale more than 7,000 chemicals. The impact of those chemicals, the report says, is immediate.

Health leaders say cigarette smoke is a big issue in the Hispanic community, even though Latinos are the group least likely to smoke.

“New data released this year shows that Hispanic eighth graders are now more likely to smoke than their peers,” Dr. Jane L. Delgado, president and CEO of the advocacy group, National Alliance for Hispanic Health. “It is a recruitment of new smokers by the tobacco industry that must be shut down.”

Delgado said Hispanics stand with Benjamin in her call “to end tobacco addiction and exposure to toxic tobacco smoke.”

“We ask along with her,” Delgado said. “If not now, when?”

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