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Newark Earns ‘D’ Grade For Tobacco Policies

The City of Newark scored lower than Fremont, Hayward, and Union City.

Photo of cigarette courtesy of Wikimedia Commons.
Photo of cigarette courtesy of Wikimedia Commons.

At least Newark didn’t get an “F.” The city’s grade on its tobacco control policies earned a “D” from the American Lung Association, which released its annual tobacco report on cities and counties on Thursday.

Newark held the course, holding on to the same grade it earned last year.

The report graded local governments in four key areas -- tobacco control and prevention spending, smoke-free air, cigarette tax and cessation coverage.

The report states the battle to reduce tobacco use in most states, including California, has "all but stalled."

In Alameda County, four cities received an A. Three cities received a “B,” four cities got a “C,” three cities earned a “D” and one city (Piedmont) received an “F.”

In the Tri-City Area, Fremont earned a “B” while Hayward earned a “C.”  Union City earned an “A.”

In Contra Costa County, one city (Richmond) received an "A" as did the unincorporated regions. Three cities received a "B," four cities got a "C," three cities earned a "D" and eight cities were tagged with an "F."

Overall, the lung association says the country must "renew its commitment to eliminate tobacco-caused death and disease."

“Despite great strides in reducing smoking rates in America, tobacco use remains the leading cause of preventable death and illness in the U.S.,” said Anita Lee, interim chief executive officer of the American Lung Association in California. “We must renew our commitment to stopping tobacco from robbing another generation of Americans of their health and future."

The reports notes California used to be a leader in tobacco control policies, but now the state is falling behind in these measures.

In this year's report, the number of California cities receiving an "A" rose while the number getting an "F" declined.

However, more than 60 percent of California's municipalities still received "F" grades.

Alex Gronke contributed to this report. 

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