C’mon LA, you can do better fighting tobacco: Lung Association’s ‘C’ grade for city’s wimpy efforts

Photo by Paolo Neo [Public domain], via Wikimedia Commons
Los Angeles maintained a “C” grade Wednesday in the latest American Lung Association report grading California communities on their efforts to reduce tobacco use and prevent exposure to secondhand smoke.

The report, titled “State of Tobacco Control 2017 — California Local Grades,” noted that the city did not pass any new tobacco-control policies in 2016. Seven area cities scored “A” grades: Baldwin Park, Compton, Glendale, Huntington Park, Manhattan Beach, Pasadena and Santa Monica.

“We are grateful to the many cities in the Los Angeles region who have tackled the issue of tobacco in their communities head  on,” said Dr. Donald Larsen, chair of the American Lung Association in California-Los Angeles Leadership Board. “But more must be done, especially in the city of Los Angeles, home to millions of people. Tobacco-related illnesses remain the single most preventable cause  of disease and death in California and we urge communities to institute policies to reduce smoking rates and exposure to secondhand smoke, and to protect our children from a lifetime of addiction.”

The report gave particular praise to El Monte, which jumped from an F grade last year to a B this year. Also noted in the report were Monrovia, which passed an ordinance banning smoking at city parks, including e-cigarettes, and West Hollywood, which passed stepped-up regulations on tobacco retailers.

While the city of Los Angeles received an overall C grade, it was rated an F in its efforts to provide smokefree housing, but scored an A for efforts to reduce tobacco sales.

Dozens of cities in Los Angeles County received F grades.

In Orange County, nearly every city received an F grade, with the exception of Laguna Hills, Laguna Woods and Santa Ana, all of which earned a C grade.

—City News Service