Centering racial justice for Black/African American and indigenous American people in commercial tobacco product regulation

Alison B. Breland, Dana Carroll, Rachel Denlinger-Apte, Jennifer Cornacchione Ross, Claradina Soto, Cassidy White, Eric C. Donny, Pebbles Fagan, Phillip Gardiner, Thomas Eissenberg, Mignonne C. Guy

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

Abstract

Although overall health in the United States (US) has improved dramatically during the past century, long-standing health inequities, particularly the unequal and unjust burden of tobacco-related disease and death among racialized populations, persist. A considerable gap exists in our understanding of how commercial tobacco product regulations and policies cause and/or exacerbate race-based health inequities among Black/African American (B/AA) and Indigenous American people. The purpose of this paper is to 1) describe how existing US commercial tobacco regulatory policies may contribute to structural racism and undermine the full benefits of tobacco prevention and control efforts among B/AA and Indigenous American groups; and 2) initiate a call to action for researchers and regulators of tobacco products to examine policies using an equity lens. These actions are imperative if empirically-informed regulation of commercial tobacco products is to address health equity.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article number107117
JournalPreventive medicine
DOIs
StateAccepted/In press - 2022

Bibliographical note

Funding Information:
More B/AA and Indigenous American tobacco regulatory science researchers should be mentored, recruited and supported in their training. B/AA scientists are less likely to receive NIH funding and very few NIH grant reviewers are B/AA (Hoppe et al., 2019). One way to increase the number of B/AA and Indigenous scientists is to promote their inclusion earlier in their education. CTP could consider supporting, in conjunction with NIH, more tobacco regulatory science focused graduate training and dissertation awards (e.g., F31; R36) by prioritizing B/AA and Indigenous trainees and/or research promoting health equity and/or racial justice among B/AA and Indigenous populations. In part, this goal could be accomplished by funding specific efforts at historically black colleges and universities, Indigenous colleges and universities, and other institutions that serve minoritized groups to build their capacity to lead and conduct tobacco-regulatory research. Further, existing NIH mentorship programs, such as the High School or Undergraduate Summer Internship Programs and new early mentorship programs that reach elementary and middle school ages should be supported by CTP with a specific goal of increasing B/AA and Indigenous researchers with an interest in tobacco regulatory science careers. We suggest that when more B/AA and Indigenous American scientists are involved in tobacco regulatory science, tobacco regulations may become more just.This research was supported by the National Institute on Drug Abuse of the National Institutes of Health (NIH) under Award Number U54DA036105 and U54DA031659, by the National Institute on Minority Health and Health Disparities of the NIH under award number K01MD014795 and U54MD002329, and the Center for Tobacco Products of the US Food and Drug Administration. All authors contributed significantly to the manuscript. The content is solely the responsibility of the authors and does not necessarily represent the views of the NIH or the FDA. Dr. Eissenberg is a paid consultant in litigation against the tobacco industry and also the electronic cigarette industry and is named on one patent for a device that measures the puffing behavior of electronic cigarette users and on another patent for a smartphone app that determines electronic cigarette device and liquid characteristics.

Funding Information:
This research was supported by the National Institute on Drug Abuse of the National Institutes of Health (NIH) under Award Number U54DA036105 and U54DA031659 , by the National Institute on Minority Health and Health Disparities of the NIH under award number K01MD014795 and U54MD002329 , and the Center for Tobacco Products of the US Food and Drug Administration . All authors contributed significantly to the manuscript. The content is solely the responsibility of the authors and does not necessarily represent the views of the NIH or the FDA. Dr. Eissenberg is a paid consultant in litigation against the tobacco industry and also the electronic cigarette industry and is named on one patent for a device that measures the puffing behavior of electronic cigarette users and on another patent for a smartphone app that determines electronic cigarette device and liquid characteristics.

Publisher Copyright:
© 2022 Elsevier Inc.

Keywords

  • Racial justice
  • Regulation
  • Structural racism
  • Tobacco control

PubMed: MeSH publication types

  • Journal Article

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