California Indians Tribes - ban tobacco companies from giving away free tobacco samples..

March 29, 2010 - The Yurok Tribe, Resighini Rancheria, Wiyot Tribe, and Blue Lake Rancheria have passed a policy that prohibits commercial tobacco companies from giving away free tobacco samples on their tribal lands. The use of non-commercial tobacco for traditional and ceremonial purposes is excluded from this policy.

United Indian Health Services’ NATIVE Tobacco Project would like to thank the Yurok Tribe and the Resighini Rancheria for taking a stand against commercial tobacco companies and stopping them from giving away free tobacco samples to lure new smokers.

The commercial tobacco industry has identified American Indian communities as an untapped and unprotected opportunity to maximize profits beyond the limits of state and county regulated jurisdictions. The commercial tobacco companies have sought to manipulate the sacred use of tobacco by improperly suggesting that commercial cigarette and smokeless tobacco products are retail substitutes for tobacco approved by elders for ceremonial use.

By prohibiting tobacco sampling, the Yurok Tribe and Resighini Rancheria are showing their commitment to the health and wellness of all people.

Reference: Tribes ban free tobacco samples on their landsThe Daily Triplicate (Crescent City California News), 3/24/2010.