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'Increasing the tobacco tax is the single most effective way to reduce smoking'

Karen Burns of Weymouth began smoking at age 14. She was diagnosed with cancer of the larynx in February, 1994 at age 46 and had her voice box surgically removed (laryngectomy) the following month. Her initial recovery included a six-week course of radiation and many months of speech therapy. Since then Burns has dedicated much of her time to educating others, especially youth, about the dangers of tobacco and about the possible long-term consequences of their decision about whether or not to smoke.

Karen Burns

“My message is not only about the effects that tobacco can have on your health. It is about decisions, consequences and, especially, about hope,” Burns said.

Increasing the tobacco tax is the single most effective way to reduce smoking rates, according to the Campaign for Tobacco Free Kids. By raising the cigarette tax by 50﷓cents per pack, the Health Now! legislation will save almost 9,000 children from premature tobacco-related deaths and reduce the number of youth smokers by 8.5 percent.




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