The Governor’s statement this morning follows a similar protest by officials in San Francisco, whose Haight neighborhood is also being featured in the campaign.
According to the Campaign for Tobacco-Free Kids:
“Joe Camel may have been put out to pasture, but his spirit lives on in R.J. Reynolds’ latest marketing campaign that once again tries to make Camel cigarettes cool, fun and rebellious – and appealing to kids. The new campaign cynically uses the names and images of trendy U.S. destinations, including Seattle, Austin, San Francisco, Las Vegas, New Orleans, and Brooklyn’s Williamsburg neighborhood, in an attempt to make Camel cigarettes cool again.”
Here is our governor’s statement:
Gov. Gregoire’s statement on Washington landmarks used in tobacco campaign
OLYMPIA – Gov. Chris Gregoire today issued the following statement on R.J. Reynolds’ latest marketing campaign that uses Washington landmarks to promote tobacco products:
“I am alarmed and disappointed at R.J. Reynolds’ new marketing campaign which exploits the name and image of Seattle to recruit young smokers. Special edition cigarette packs featuring Washington landmarks, including the Pike Place Market and Mt. Rainier, are being co-opted to sell a product that is responsible for killing about 7,500 people in our state every year.
“We have worked hard to help people break free from tobacco addiction and the suffering and death it causes individuals and families. Washington has 320,000 fewer adult smokers and 65,000 fewer youth smokers than before we started our Tobacco Prevention and Control Program 10 years ago.
“This campaign threatens to destroy these gains by claiming that their cigarettes are an opportunity ‘for a glowing future’ when the opposite is true–they are a one-way ticket to disease and addiction.
“I call on R.J. Reynolds to halt their cynical campaign and not use our local landmarks for their gain.”
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