Community Profile: Orange County, Florida
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Tobacco Use Prevention
“WE WANT THE PUBLIC TO REALIZE OUR CHILDREN NEED HEALTHY AREAS TO PLAY IN, AND WE CAN HELP WITH THAT.”
— Samuel B. Ings, City County Commissioner
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“I AM A FORMER SMOKER AND I SUPPORT THIS ALL THE WAY…EVERYONE NEEDS TO THINK OF THEIR FAMILIES AND CHILDREN AS WELL AS THOSE OF US WHO DON'T SMOKE.”
— Michelle, Orange County resident
Communities Putting Prevention to Work (CPPW) is an initiative designed to make healthy living easier by promoting environmental changes at the local level. Through funding awarded by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention in 2010, a total of 50 communities are working to prevent obesity and tobacco use—the two leading preventable causes of death and disability.
Orange County, Florida, which is home to 1,145,956 residents, is tackling tobacco use with the goal of improving the entire community's health. Tobacco use prevention is important to Orange County, where respiratory disease is among the top causes of death. Approximately 13% of adults and 11% of high school students in Orange County smoke. Additionally, more than 60% of high school students in Orange County report exposure to secondhand smoke, and only 48.1% of high school students reported receiving any tobacco use prevention education.
If healthy options are not available, then healthy living is not possible. With the support of the CPPW initiative, Orange County has implemented a variety of changes throughout the community to make healthy living easier.
To decrease tobacco use, Orange County:
- Implemented a public education initiative, All into Health, which focuses on the detrimental effect of secondhand smoke. This campaign is shifting social norms among community members through billboards, radio and television promotion, visibility at community events, and social media outreach.
- Established a campuswide smoke-free policy for the Orange County Health Department. This initiative will impact approximately 650 county employees in addition to all clients and visitors. Installed 234 bicycle racks throughout Miami-Dade County.
- Created a smoke-free campus for Valencia College. Effective by the fall 2012 term, approximately 67,000 students and 3,000 staff will be protected from secondhand smoke on campus.
- Cleaned three public parks to remove all cigarette butts, ensuring healthy, clean environments for visitors.
(The list above is a sample of all activities completed by the community.)
On September 27, 2011, the Orange County School Board passed a comprehensive tobacco-free policy that prohibits tobacco use on school grounds, which includes buildings, recreational areas, and stadiums. To facilitate enforcement, signage will be developed and installed throughout the campus to remind faculty, staff, students, and visitors of the new policy. Additionally, Orange County Public Schools created and distributed educational toolkits to promote tobacco cessation.
The leadership team includes high-level community leaders from multiple sectors, who have the combined resources and capacity to make healthy living easier. Members of Orange County's leadership team are key agents for change in their community. The leadership team includes representatives from the following organizations:
- American Cancer Society
- American Heart Association
- City of Orlando
- Community Foundation of Central Florida
- Florida Hospital
- Orange County Healthy Start Coalition
- Orlando Health
- Orlando Magic
- Rosen Hotels and Resorts
- University of Central Florida
- Walt Disney World®
- Winter Park Health Foundation
- Page last reviewed: October 25, 2013
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