It’s December, and here at the American Heart Association, that means we are pausing to reflect on all we’ve accomplished. Thanks to your hard work and support- we have a lot to celebrate!
On #ElectionDay2016, the AHA supported 23 ballot initiatives across the country. Many voters put health first in their communities by casting their votes in favor of better health for all. 15 of those 23 ballot initiatives were successful!
Californians voted to increase the state’s tax on tobacco, a strategy proven to save lives! In every other state that has already raised their cigarette taxes, smoking rates have gone down. The U.S. Surgeon General said this is especially true among kids. In CA, a portion of the returns from the tobacco tax will significantly increase funding for the state’s tobacco prevention and cessation programs, which will drive down tobacco use even more. This historic measure will reduce teen smoking, increase access to health care, and will save lives.
Four cities voted to reduce consumption of sugary drinks through targeted taxes. Voters in San Francisco, Oakland and Albany, California, as well as Boulder, Colorado, delivered a big win on sugary drinks to help improve the health of their communities. In fact, the three Bay Area cities’ votes positively impacted the health of nearly 200,000, including nearly 108,000 in San Francisco alone. Also, in Boulder, Colorado, Measure 2H, a measure that will help reduce consumption of sugary drinks, will generate upwards of $3.8 million in funding for city health programs.
Finally, voters in ten states and localities cast their ballots in favor of getting active every day in and around their great cities, including Los Angeles and Santa Cruz, California; Atlanta and Fulton County, Georgia; Charlotte and Greensboro, North Carolina; Clark County, Nevada; Austin, Texas; as well as the states of Maine and Rhode Island.