Tuesday, May 24, 2011

‘One Good Reason’ Member Named Nat’l Youth Advocate of Year

(SALT LAKE CITY) – The national Campaign for Tobacco-free Kids (CTFK) has honored Taylorsville student Kiley Atkins as “Youth Advocate of the Year.” She was chosen for her leadership in the Utah Department of Health-sponsored anti-tobacco youth group One Good Reason. Atkins recently returned from the nation’s capital where she accepted her award at a CTFK gala.

Kiley’s fight against the tobacco industry began early. She first learned about tobacco in 3rd grade, and went directly home to inspire her grandparents to quit smoking. In 2009, Atkins related that personal experience with a moving story to members of the Utah Legislature’s Health and Human Services Committee

“I’m so proud of all that Kiley has accomplished during her three years of service in the youth group’s presidency,” said Andrea Deming, One Good Reason adult coordinator. “Her friends come from different backgrounds and most of them are exposed to tobacco. Kiley has been great at building up One Good Reason through lasting friendships, creating exciting events, and helping people quit smoking.”

Kiley was chosen for the award because of accomplishments like:
   Running anti-tobacco events, rallies and demonstrations
   Fighting the tobacco industry’s sponsorships of Utah college rodeos
   Conducting a study to determine the influence of tobacco flavors and dual-use products
   Meeting face-to-face with lawmakers to educate them about tobacco

“One of the coolest things we did with One Good Reason was collecting surveys about how youth perceive tobacco product packaging,” says Atkins. “Basically half of Utah teens would consider using tobacco products based on their colorful, candy-like packaging.” 
Kiley is just one of many great anti-tobacco crusaders in One Good Reason, a youth group that shares a tobacco-free lifestyle. One Good Reason is open to all youth ages 12-18. The group is accepting applications for youth members. To apply or for more information go to http://www.onegoodreason.net/

The Youth Advocate of the Year Award is a national honor presented to youth who have promoted tobacco prevention legislation in their home states, helped reduce tobacco marketing in their communities, and worked to stop their peers from using tobacco.

The tobacco industry spends $60 million each year in Utah marketing its drugs. The Utah Department of Health’s Tobacco Prevention and Control Program efforts, combined with local health department efforts, have helped drive the youth smoking rate down by 29 percent since the campaign began in 1999. Ninety percent of adult smokers begin lighting up before age 19 and one in three will eventually die of their addiction. For more information and resources visit http://www.onegoodreason.net/.

Media Contact:
Andrea Deming
UDOH Tobacco Prevention and Control Program 
(o) 801-538-7085 (m) 801-836-4066
Kiley Atkins
CTFK Youth Advocate of the Year
Mobile: (801) 403-5327

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