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Nearly 90% of African American smokers use menthols.
African Americans are less likely to successfully quit smoking than white Americans.
Source: Morbidity and Mortality Weekly Report (MMWR): Quitting Smoking Among Adults --- United States, 2001--2010 ; Center for Disease Control and Prevention ; November 11, 2011
In DC, Big Tobacco advertises up to 10x more in black neighborhoods than in other neighborhoods
Source: Lee, J. G., Henriksen, L., Rose, S. W., Moreland-Russell, S., & Ribisl, K. M. (2015). A systematic review of neighborhood disparities in point-of-sale tobacco marketing. American journal of public health, 105(9), e8-e18.
Around the 1980s, tobacco companies labeled African Americans - less educated, prefer malt liquor, have problems with their own self-esteem.
Source: "1990 (900000) New Marketing Ideas. Summary of Programs." Truth Tobacco Industry Documents, 1989. Report.
Back in the ‘80’s, a major tobacco company paid to go into inner-city neighborhoods and hand out free samples of menthol cigarettes in an effort to acquire African Americans as customers.
Source: PM, PHILIP MORRIS. BENSON & HEDGES PART-TIME INNER CITY SAMPLING PROGRAM. 1985 June 03. Philip Morris Records.
In 1989, one tobacco company's ideas for reaching minority customers included to "be seen as a friend," "build on black history," and "help them find jobs."
Source: "Salem Black Initiative Program Brand Team Ideation Session." Truth Tobacco Industry Documents. 03 Aug. 1989. Report.
Nearly 45% of African American menthol smokers say they would quit smoking altogether if menthols were banned, as opposed to switching to a non-flavored product.
48.4% of middle school smokers and 54% of high school smokers smoke menthols.
African Americans are more likely to die from smoking-related diseases than white Americans.
Source: African Americans and Tobacco Use: Smoking & Tobacco Use ; Center for Disease Control and Prevention ; August 17, 2016
In 2015, 72.8% of African Americans were interested in quitting smoking and 63.4% reported making a quit attempt.
Source: Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). Quitting Smoking Among Adults — United States, 2000–2015. MMWR Morb Mortal Wkly Rep. 6 Jan 2017;65(52):1457-1464.
Several studies have found a greater number of tobacco advertisements in African American neighborhoods.
Source: "Disparities and Menthol Marketing: Additional Evidence in Support of Point of Sale Policies." International Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health — Open Access Journal, Anderson, 2016 ; Moreland-Russel, 2013; Rising 2011