Mount Sinai Missionary Baptist Church in Los Angeles recently hosted the first NoMenthol Sunday observance in Southern California.
NoMenthol Sunday is a national interfaith effort to educate congregants about the role mentholated and candy-flavored tobacco products play in addicting African Americans to tobacco products.
Over 45,000 Black people die every year from tobacco related diseases. Studies show that placing a ban on menthol may save lives and prevent 9 million people from starting to smoke.
Mt. Sinai’s Pastor George E. Hurtt prayed and spoke lovingly of the need for congregants to embrace and uplift Black smokers as they seek information and support to stop smoking. Mt. Sinai has a strong health emphasis and regularly includes health promotion activities. The service was well received, with 200 members in attendance.
The NoMenthol Sunday effort was coordinated by Mt. Sinai members Tavon Morrison and Sharmaine White, under the leadership of Dr. Susan Bradshaw, MD, MPH. Dr. Bradshaw works with the Division of Chronic Disease & Injury Prevention for the Department of Public Health in Los Angeles County.
As a tobacco treatment specialist and researcher, Dr. Bradshaw spoke passionately about how young people are lured with cigarette packaging that looks like candy, how easy it is to get addicted to nicotine, how hard it is to quit, and more importantly, the deadly impact that tobacco has had on her community.
After the services, her team shared resources and information. NoMenthol Sunday events will continue throughout the month of June.
For information or host an event, contact Y’Lonn Burris at (888) 881-6619, ext. 104 or email [email protected]