North High School, SADD
As student leaders, SADD (Students Against Destructive Decisions) members are dedicated to increasing the awareness of the dangers of tobacco use to our fellow students at North St. Paul High School. Through compliance checks and peer education our group has worked outside of school to survey gas stations and convenience stores in our community. The awareness SADD members have gained as a result of our community outreach is helping to guide out group towards creating a healthier school and community. We know that tobacco companies are targeting us and North High SADD is striking back!
Survey Findings & News
We did our surveys in the North St. Paul community. Although cigarette ads are something we see just about every day, we never realized the number of advertisements and the messages they are tyring to send to us. In one store alone, we found 7 advertisements just for Camel brand cigarettes. These advertisements implied that cigarettes are glamourous, cool, and commonly used among people our age. At almost all of the stores, outdoor cigarette sinage was about three feet off the ground, but inside they were mostly down low for little kids to see.
Our group is composed of about 10 members in grades 9,10,11, and 12. In addition to our partnership with the tobacco coalition, our group sponsors safe driving campaigns that aim to reduce impaired and distracted driving and increase seat belt use. We also do activities surrounding violence prevention, suicide awareness, and other activities to reduce destructive decision making among the student body.
North SADD was really surprised by the amount of tobacco product advertising in the community and the inappropriate things that the ads suggested. We feel that the tobacco companies are making smoking and chewing tobacco look sexy and young. We are here because we know better, and we want to send a message to the tobacco companies that we are not alright with them targeting us and our little brothers and sisters!
Our main outreach activity was store surveys and meetings to share our findings with other students. As our group kicks off the new school year we look forward to doing more outreach in our community.