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36th annual Great American Smokeout is Nov. 17

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The American Cancer Society is marking the 36th Annual Great American Smokeout on Nov. 17 this year. “Smokers who participate in the Great American Smokeout by not smoking on Nov. 17 take an important step towards a healthier life and the possibility of quitting for good,” said Christy White, supervising health education coordinator for the El Dorado County Tobacco Use Prevention Program (TUPP). According to White, Californians have seen dramatic changes in tobacco use and related policies over the past twenty years. “Many public and work places are now smokefree, and smoking rates have reached historic lows,” said White. Still, an estimated 11.9 percent of California adults and 16.8 percent of El Dorado County adults currently smoke. White admits that quitting smoking can be difficult, but emphasizes that it can be done. “To be successful in quitting, you need to know what you're up against, what your options are, and where to go for help,” said White. Many resources are available to help smokers quit, including the California Smoker’s Helpline that offers free over-the-phone counseling at 1-800-NO-BUTTS and online at californiasmokershelpline.org. For additional resources, including locations of local stop smoking classes, contact TUPP at (530) 621-6142. TUPP is a program within the Public Health Division of the El Dorado County Health and Human Services Agency.