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SEARHC Celebrates National Kick Butts Day

On March 20, SEARHC will support Southeast Alaska elementary, middle, and high school students taking part in Kick Butts Day, a national day of activism that empowers thousands of kids across the country to speak up and educate the community to fight youth tobacco use, especially surrounding the growing popularity of e-cigarettes.

Woman holding no smoking sign in front of Kick Butts Day background

In 2017, more high school students used e-cigarettes than smoked cigarettes. 10.9 percent of high school students smoked on at least one day in the past 30 days, which is higher than the nationwide rate of 8.8 percent. 15.7 percent of high school students used e-cigarettes, 9.0 percent used smokeless tobacco and 6.6 percent smoked cigars at least one day in the past 30 days. Nationally, the rates were 13.2 percent, 5.5 percent and 8.0 percent, respectively. Additionally, Alaska Native high school students are significantly more likely to smoke than non-Native students, although the gap has decreased considerably since 2003.

By getting involved on Kick Butts Day, Southeast Alaskan youth sends the message to their communities that staying tobacco-free is vital to living a happier, healthier lifestyle. Below is a list of SEARHC events supporting Kick Butts Day.

In honor of National Kick Butts Day SEARHC will be hosting a Health Promotion table at the Gold Medal Basketball Tournament in Juneau. The table will have resources that encourage patients to call Alaska’s Tobacco Quit Line at 1-800-QUIT-NOW. The Quit Line provides phone, text, and web-based quit coaching services, print material resources, and nicotine replacement therapy (NRT).

SEARHC, Sitka Community Hospital, the HOPE Coalition, and Sitka Counseling partners host community cleanups once a month. This month’s cleanup will be in honor of Kick Butts Day and will focus on cigarette butts. The cleanup will be Thursday, March 21, from 1:30 p.m. – 3:00 p.m. and will start behind the Senior Center and work its way through downtown.

For more information about the Juneau event, contact Emily Davis at 907.364.4564, and for the Sitka event, contact Amanda Roberts at 907.966.8745.

For free support to quit tobacco, call Alaska’s Tobacco Quit Line at 1-800-QUIT-NOW (1-800-784-8669) or enroll online at alaskaquitline.com.

For more information about Kick Butts Day, visit the website at www.kickbuttsday.org.

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The SEARHC Crisis Help Line, 1.877.294.0074, is available 24 hours a day, seven days a week to residents of Southeast Alaska.