The Bloomberg Initiative to Reduce Tobacco Use works in low- and middle-income countries around the world to promote proven tobacco control policies that are helping to combat the global tobacco epidemic.
The Bloomberg Initiative emphasizes the implementation of evidence-based policies shown to reduce tobacco use. To track our progress and monitor policy changes, we use high-quality tools and practices.
The Bloomberg Initiative works through a global network of partners to support and defend countries implementing comprehensive tobacco control policies. Our partner organizations include: the Campaign for Tobacco-Free Kids, the CDC Foundation, Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health, the International Union Against Tuberculosis and Lung Disease, the World Health Organization, Vital Strategies, and the University of Illinois – Chicago. Bloomberg Philanthropies and The Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation joined together to launch the Anti-Tobacco Litigation Fund.
Bloomberg Philanthropies has committed nearly $1 billion since 2007 to combat tobacco use worldwide. The Bloomberg Initiative to Reduce Tobacco Use aims to reduce the global demand for tobacco through a comprehensive, proven approach that combines policy change with increased public awareness. Key strategies of this approach include creating smoke-free public places, banning tobacco advertising, increasing tax on tobacco products, requiring graphic pack warnings and supporting hard-hitting mass media campaigns.
APPLYING THE BLOOMBERG PHILANTHROPIES APPROACH TO FIGHT GLOBAL TOBACCO USE
Tobacco Control in Practice – Turkey
TOBACCO IS THE WORLD’S LEADING AGENT OF DEATH AND DISEASE
Tobacco kills over 6 million people every year, with most of these deaths occurring in low- and middle-income countries.
Every day, more than 14,000 people die from tobacco use. Most tobacco-related deaths occur in low- and middle-income countries, areas that are targets of intensive tobacco industry marketing. Unless urgent action is taken, tobacco will kill 8 million people a year worldwide by 2030, with 80% of these deaths expected to occur in developing countries.
Tobacco can also be deadly for non-smokers. Secondhand tobacco smoke contributes to heart disease, cancer, and other diseases, causing an additional 600,000 premature deaths annually.
The scale of this human tragedy is shocking, but it’s also preventable. Big Tobacco — along with all manufacturers of tobacco products — is fighting to ensure the dangers of their product are concealed, but we are fighting back.
Tobacco Control in Practice – Vietnam
PUTTING THE BRAKES ON THE WORLDWIDE TOBACCO EPIDEMIC
In 2003, the World Health Assembly adopted its milestone World Health Organization (WHO) Framework Convention on Tobacco Control — a landmark for global public health. Four years later, the Bloomberg Initiative to Reduce Tobacco Use was introduced to accelerate progress on global tobacco control efforts.
The tobacco control movement needed funding, planning, more technical capacity, and a coordinated strategy among stakeholders. Launched in 2007, the Bloomberg Initiative to Reduce Tobacco Use has changed the landscape of global tobacco control. The Initiative supports the implementation of proven, evidence-based measures to reduce tobacco use. It has scaled the work of leading non-governmental and governmental organizations, attracted major new philanthropic investments, aligned stakeholders around interventions that work, and generated broad awareness and media attention to the cause.
Since 2007, we’ve supported the most effective tobacco control policies, collectively known as MPOWER, to reduce tobacco use. We’ve invested nearly $1 billion to implement these measures where they are needed most.
MPOWER’S SIX PROVEN TOBACCO CONTROL STRATEGIES:
MONITOR TOBACCO USE AND PREVENTION POLICIES
By applying rigorous oversight and metrics to tracking tobacco use and legislation, governments are in a stronger position to make effective progress.
PROTECT PEOPLE FROM TOBACCO SMOKE
Enacting and enforcing smoke-free environments in public places protects people from secondhand smoke and creates a cultural shift away from tobacco use.
OFFER HELP TO QUIT TOBACCO USE
Community initiatives – such as telephone hotlines providing guidance on how to quit smoking – strengthen health systems to make tobacco cessation advice available and part of primary health care.
WARN ABOUT THE DANGERS OF TOBACCO
Requiring graphic, accurate package warning labels and keeping the public informed with press coverage about the harms of tobacco use and tobacco control measures helps counter misleading tobacco industry advertising.
ENFORCE BANS ON TOBACCO ADVERTISING, PROMOTION, AND SPONSORSHIP
Enacting and enforcing effective legislation that comprehensively bans any form of direct or indirect tobacco advertising, promotion, and sponsorship curtails the impact of tobacco industry marketing.
RAISE TAXES ON AND PRICES OF TOBACCO
Keeping tax rates high for tobacco products and ensuring that they are adjusted periodically to rise faster than consumer purchasing power is the single most effective mechanism to reduce tobacco use.
Tobacco Control in Practice – China
PROTECTING MORE THAN ONE BILLION PEOPLE WITH NEW POLICIES
Our investment of nearly $1 billion accelerates progress on global tobacco control by focusing on the countries with the most tobacco use.
Along with national and local governments in high-burden areas, our partners and grantees are making positive change happen in some of the toughest tobacco industry strongholds. Together, we have protected nearly 1.7 billion people with at least one new high-quality tobacco control policy since 2007.
The advocacy and political activities comprising the Bloomberg Initiative to Reduce Tobacco Use are supported by Mike Bloomberg personally and are not in any part supported by The Bloomberg Family Foundation.
NEXT STEPS: COUNTERING TOBACCO INDUSTRY ATTACKS
As the tobacco control movement gains momentum, the tobacco industry is stepping up their efforts to fight regulation. In response, we announced the third phase of the Bloomberg Initiative to Reduce Tobacco Use. This new phase, which started in 2013, continues to focus investment on low- and middle-income countries with the highest tobacco-consuming rates: Bangladesh, China, India, Indonesia, and Russia. Additionally, our program to directly support governments and non-governmental organizations through grant funding in high-burden countries continues to focus on areas of specific action in other low- and middle-income settings.