Report Calls for Tobacco-Free Military, Starting With New Recruits

June 27, 2009

(ChattahBox)—A new study commissioned by the Department of Defense and Veterans Affairs provides the military with a comprehensive and detailed plan to eventually transform all branches of the military into tobacco-free institutions, beginning with new recruits at military academies and officer training programs.

The report was prepared by the Institute of Medicine and calls for the implementation of incremental steps over the next few years, resulting in a complete ban of tobacco use in the military within 20 years or sooner.

The stated goal of the DOD is to eventually have all military installations and active-duty personnel tobacco-free.

New recruits would be targeted first, with new enlistees informed during the recruitment stage that they would be required to remain tobacco-free during their entire military careers.

The report also recommends that Army and Air Force commissaries ban the sale of tobacco products and put an end to heavily discounted tobacco products sold at other military stores.

As part of the move to ban smoking, the report recommends accessible, tobacco-cessation services, counseling and nicotine-replacement therapy be made available to all personnel.

As of 2005, 32 percent of active-duty personnel and 22 percent of veterans were smokers. With the increased deployment of troops to fight in two wars, the rate of smoking has recently increased in active-duty soldiers.

The study cites statistics showing how smoking adversely affects the health of military personnel, resulting in higher medical costs for medical treatment of smoking-related illnesses. Tobacco use was also found to impair military readiness.

The full report entitled, Combating Tobacco Use in Military and Veteran Populations is available to download.



2 Responses to “Report Calls for Tobacco-Free Military, Starting With New Recruits”

  1. Bob on June 28th, 2009 3:27 pm

    These smoking bans will probably go down in history as one of the greatest marketing scams ever by using tax exempt political action committees calling themselves “charities”. They want to “hurry up and pass the bans” before people find out who is paying the lobbyists pushing for them by using our tax money.
    Here’s the beginning of the ban movement in the USA.

    Here are the instructions from Johnson and Johnsons’ (makers of cessation products) RWJ Foundation for their tax exempt political action committees. They are getting enough money from the RWJ Foundation, plus using MY tax money. They aren’t getting any more money from me.

  2. Michael J. McFadden on July 18th, 2009 10:20 pm

    So the latest on this now from one official is that “The military could end tobacco use within 20 years by gradually refusing entry to users,”

    Brilliant idea. Truly brilliant, and a perfect example of the kind of thinking that goes into smoking bans.

    Thirty-five years ago you had college students deliberately getting arrested for smoking marijuana in order to avoid the draft. So now we’re going to have a situation where the US gets into some really nasty war, maybe in someplace like Iran or Korea on top of what we’ve already got….

    … and students will take up smoking tobacco in droves to duck out of the draft.

    Truly brilliant.

    Michael J. McFadden
    Author of “Dissecting Antismokers’ Brains”

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