Virtual Day at the Capitol 2021

On May 4, PACT and TRU held their annual Day at the Capitol and student rally virtually with legislative meetings followed by a public Community Forum. Over 300 youth and adult lung health and tobacco control advocates shared their voices with over 70 Pennsylvania lawmakers and urged legislators to maintain level state funding ($13.754 million) for FY22 to tobacco prevention and control programs and to close loopholes in the Clean Indoor Air Act. Following the legislative visits, the public Community Forum featured TRU youth, lung health experts, an open Q&A as well as virtual exhibit booths.

  • 25 youth participated in nearly 72 legislative video calls, along with over 100 PACT adult advocates, to share their personal stories about the effects of the youth vaping epidemic to further emphasize the importance of maintaining level tobacco prevention and control program funding. Advocates also educated legislators about the importance of clean indoor air, especially during the ongoing pandemic.
  • During the live Community Forum, the Chief Mission and Chief Medical Officer of the Lung Association spoke about the increased importance of funding as well as the dangers of secondhand smoke for highlight the need for comprehensive clean indoor air. Three TRU Ambassadors spoke during the forum to showcase the importance of e-cigarette education for students & teachers and effective peer-to-peer tobacco prevention activities. Lastly, two PA lawmakers shared recorded videos applauding the efforts of the advocates.
  • The virtual 6Connex platform featured 4 different “booths” containing educational information on the dangers of e-cigarettes, asthma, as well as information on ALA events and TRU. The TRU exhibit booth contained all of the youth activities for the event, including a Padlet board to collect messages about MSA funding, a “Raise the Bar (Graph)” activity to show the small percentage of MSA funds that PA tobacco programs have received over the years, and a template email to send to their legislators.

Day at the Capitol 2020

Our First Virtual Day at the Capitol!

Our first ever virtual Day at the Capitol was a huge success thanks to the 400+ advocates who participated on May 5, 2020! Tobacco control advocates and students still had the opportunity to come together virtually to provide education to legislators on important tobacco control issues throughout the Commonwealth. The primary advocacy topic of focus was the importance of sustaining tobacco prevention and control funding to support necessary tobacco cessation and prevention programs and services – especially during this critical time for lung health. 

PACT advocates had the chance to speak with state legislators over the phone to discuss the importance of their work and/or passion for tobacco prevention and control and attend a virtual Town Hall to learn more about the connection between COVID-19 & tobacco use, the e-cigarette epidemic, the history and importance of tobacco prevention & control funding, and the experience & thoughts of current TRU youth and students across PA.

Participants also had the opportunity to engage through social media as well as through the Cluster app. Check out the PACT Facebook page to view photos and highlights from the event.

Day at the Capitol 2019

For the first time, nearly 700 youth and adult advocates rallied together and were highlighted in the media for their great work. The 2019 Day at the Capitol was held on May 7th at the Pennsylvania State Capitol in Harrisburg. The primary advocacy topics of focus included the importance of increasing the minimum sales age for tobacco products to 21 to eliminate or reduce youth tobacco initiation as well as sustaining Master Settlement Agreement (MSA) dollars to support necessary tobacco cessation and prevention programs and services.

Visit the PACT Facebook page to view photos from this successful event.

Day at the Capitol 2018

Another Successful Day at the Capitol!

Each year, hundreds of TRU (Tobacco Resistance Unit) members from across the state of Pennsylvania rally together with adult lung health advocates at the State Capitol in Harrisburg to speak with their lawmakers about current tobacco control issues, such as Tobacco 21 (T21).  This year, on May 1st 2018, TRU youth had the chance to make their voice heard by advocating to raise the minimum age to purchase tobacco and nicotine products from 18 to 21. They also had a lot of fun while gathering signatures for their post-it petition in support of T21 and they also had the opportunity to participate in a scavenger hunt and win some cool prizes! Take a look back at last year’s event!