Kick Butts Day employs grassroots for its launch

WASHINGTON: The 13th annual Kick Butts Day on April 2, sponsored by the Campaign for Tobacco Free Kids', will feature grassroots events that support federal legislation to tighten regulations on tobacco by designating it as food.

WASHINGTON: The 13th annual Kick Butts Day on April 2, sponsored by the Campaign for Tobacco Free Kids', will feature grassroots events that support federal legislation to tighten regulations on tobacco by designating it as food.

Hundreds of activities at schools around the US are plan-ned in association with the event, which encourages kids to "stand out, speak up, and seize control in the fight against tobacco."

Nicole Dueffert, associate director of media relations, said that many of the activities are not just about quitting smoking generally, but instead will focus on particular legislation. Congressional legislation requiring FDA oversight of ingredients within cigarettes is tentatively scheduled for markup on April 2, and many planned Kick Butt activities aim to rally in support for it.

The Campaign will launch a satellite and radio-media tour on April 2 with its research director and a featured youth advocate.

Events include "Pledge Walls," in which kids promise to encourage relatives to quit, and "Project 1200," in which participants gather 1,200 pairs of shoes through donations for a display representing the number of people the group says die every day from tobacco-related illnesses.

"A lot of the kids this year are doing projects called, 'That's what they put in the cigarette,'" she said. "So you can have a group of elementary school kids with a display on a table showing ammonia or a frog in formaldehyde, to show the kinds of ingredients that can be in cigarettes."

The national Campaign office provides advice and help to groups organizing its own events, including free Web site materials. The Campaign also coaches groups on how to get media coverage for events.

For the second year, GYMR is assisting the group with outreach efforts to media and event organizers, as well as helping to draft press releases and other materials, such as Op-Eds.

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