(Note: Opinions expressed are those of the authors and do not necessarily reflect the views of ETR as an agency.)
By Marcia Quackenbush, MS, MFT, MCHES | October 25, 2016
Senior Editor, ETR
The tragedy of opioid addiction is not new. When I was a teen, my sisters and I lost two friends to heroin overdoses.
And I still remember the time one of my closest friends told me about the night she tried some drugs with her boyfriend, a heroin addict, and almost died. When she stopped breathing, he didn’t want to call for help because he was afraid he’d be arrested.
No, opioids and heroin are not new. But today’s epidemic is different, and it’s become much worse.
By ETR | August 8, 2016
For most of her life, Narinder Dhaliwal has been an enthusiastic advocate for tobacco control. “I watched my grandfather slowly kill himself by smoking one or two packs a day,” she explains.
Some of the effects left a strong impression on Narinder. “His fingers on both hands were stained yellow. His lips were close to black. He was always surrounded by the smell of stale tobacco.”
Her grandfather paid the highest possible price for smoking. “He worked his whole life at the Ford car factory. He finally retired at age 60. He never got to cash his first pension check. He died of a massive heart attack while on holiday in India. That check arrived after he died.”
It is no surprise that, after this experience, Narinder has brought a particular devotion to her work as Director of ETR’s Tobacco Education Clearinghouse (TECC).
By Narinder Dhaliwal, MA | September 8, 2015
Project Director, Calfiornia's Clean Air Project, ETR
Hookah. The very word brings a sense of excitement to the minds of many young adults. Not only can they sit around a table among friends and smoke, they can share this beautiful, ornate device that makes it an extra-special experience!
What was once a cultural tradition dating back 500 years in Middle East regions of the world has become a trend. It’s “cool,” “sexy,” “fun,” “relaxing.”
I’m one of those people who thinks, “How can I talk about something if I haven’t experienced it?” Some years ago, in the interest of educating myself to be able to educate others, I decided to visit a hookah bar. I wanted to see what all the intrigue was about.
By Laura Perkins, MLS | July 9, 2015
Project Editor, ETR
Laws on the legalization of marijuana in the U.S. are changing rapidly. Since 1996, 23 states and Washington, D.C. have legalized the use of marijuana to treat some medical conditions. A number of states have decriminalized the possession of small amounts of marijuana. And now Colorado, Washington, Alaska and Oregon have legalized the recreational use of marijuana for adults over 21. The public health implications within this changing landscape are only just beginning to emerge.
By Narinder Dhaliwal, MA | June 2, 2015
Project Director, California's Clean Air Project, ETR
“Nicotine is not addictive,” tobacco executives said in 1994, testifying before Congress in what are now known as the Waxman Hearings. They said this repeatedly, even in the face of overwhelming evidence to the contrary from authorities all the way up to the U.S. Surgeon General.
Over 20 years later, we have 20 more years worth of scientific evidence demonstrating that nicotine is addictive and harmful. We know these products are killing people in all kinds of ways, from direct smoking, to secondhand smoke exposure and even thirdhand smoke (the residual nicotine and other chemicals that remain on people and indoor surfaces—hair, skin, clothes, counters, furniture, drapes, bedding and more).
So what are tobacco companies telling us now that e-cigarettes are on the scene?
By Narinder Dhaliwal, MA
Have you ever heard, “You can’t work with Native Americans unless you are a Native American”? Not true! Yet we hear it over and over again from those who appoint themselves as the “gatekeepers” of Tribal Nations. California’s Clean Air Project (CCAP) at ETR has been building relationships and providing education and research to Tribal Nations in California since 2006. What we’ve found is that respect is the key.