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UC Merced Snags TRDRP’s First Tobacco Policy Research Center Award

On August 1, 2018, the UC Merced Nicotine and Cannabis Policy Center was funded by TRDRP. This research center successfully competed for funding to conduct tobacco and cannabis policy research, conduct “rapid response” policy research (to inform policy on emerging issues), and translate the results to support tobacco and cannabis control efforts for the San Joaquin Valley (SJV) region.

According to the 2018 California Tobacco Facts and Figures, published by the California Department of Public Health, the smoking rate in rural areas of California (like SJV) is higher than in urban areas.  In particular the smoking rates for several counties in SJV – Fresno, Merced, Stanislaus, and Tulare counties – range between 16% and 19% compared to urban counties like Los Angeles (11.6%) and San Francisco (10.8%).

A particular focus of the new policy center will be understanding nicotine and cannabis policy knowledge and attitudes among young people, and empowering and supporting youth as agents of change in tobacco and cannabis control policy efforts at the local and state level.

Read more on the Fresno Bee

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