Teen Activist

Educating Oklahomans About CounterAct Tobacco

June 27, 2024

Hi, my name is Katherine Jones, and I am a junior at Westville High School. I have been in the YAHL program for three years and on the Leadership Team for two. 

CounterAct Tobacco is one of the campaigns we work on, and it aims to take the power out of Big Tobacco’s hands and put it back into local communities. Local communities want this power back, so that they can put policies in place that would be customized to their needs. For example, comprehensive tobacco retail licensing that includes vapes.

I have had so many amazing experiences with YAHL, but the one I am talking about today takes place during our Leadership Summit. The Leadership Team walked around Oklahoma City, supervised by our YFO’s, to educate the people in the community about CounterAct Tobacco and have them take a survey to gauge their opinions on tobacco in Oklahoma. We are able to then take this data to our state legislators to show the support we have for the campaign and educate them about the  problem with how the tobacco industry is selling to minors.

CounterAct Tobacco is trying to help the present youth and the up-and-coming generations by putting policies in place. Right now, it is easier for youth to get addicted to tobacco because they can get their hands on these products at a young age and might even be feeling peer pressured or trying to act cool. We are really trying to protect our youth because they do not know how harmful it can be.

By: Katherine Jones, Westville High School

Supported by YAHL, a program of TSET.
Funded in whole or in part by the Oklahoma Tobacco Settlement Endowment Trust (TSET)

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