Tagline: Until the Work Is Done
OUT Against Big Tobacco

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Tobacco Use: What We Know

For decades, Big Tobacco has preyed on the LGBTQ+ community, targeting us through their marketing campaigns, getting us hooked on their deadly products. The result? LGBTQ+ people are more than TWICE as likely to smoke as our non-LGBTQ+ peers, and nearly 30,000 LGBTQ+ people across the country die every year of tobacco-related causes.

The OUT Against Big Tobacco Coalition is taking a stand! We were victimized. We will not allow them prey on us any longer. They don’t respect our existence, but they will respect our resistance.

What We Do

We’re fighting back; fighting for the institutional changes required to save our next generation from the predatory practices of Big Tobacco. Enough is enough. Big Tobacco has the money, but we have the power of the people.

We stand and fight for policy changes targeted to reduce the tobacco-related health disparities within our community. We are fighting to enact the following policies throughout Los Angeles County and California’s Central Valley region:

  1. Restrict the availability of ALL flavors in ALL tobacco products. No Exceptions.
  2. No longer allow the use of discounts and price reduction promotions for the purchase of ANY tobacco product.
  3. Create a culture of tobacco-free Pride celebrations
  4. Remove the influence of Big Tobacco from California State elections

AND we offer grants to LGBTQ+ serving community organizations!

Equality California Institute is offering 1-year community grants of $5,000 to qualified non-profit organizations interested in learning more about Tobacco Control as an LGBTQ+ issue! The Central Valley OUT Against Big Tobacco Coalition Subgrantee application will become available in Fall of 2022.

YOU can be OUT too!

  1. Request a training for your school/organization
  2. Follow us on Facebook and Twitter!
  3. Apply to become an OUT Against Big Tobacco Coalition subgrant recipient
  4. Join an OUT Against Big Tobacco Coalition.
  5. Make them hear you! When you post about your tobacco experiences or retweet others, include the hashtag #OUTTobacco
  6. Remain up to date with the latest ways you can stand OUT with us. Become an EQCA member!

Pledge: Kick Big Tobacco OUT of California Politics

We launched a pledge in November 2021 urging California legislators and legislative candidates to voluntarily refuse campaign contributions from the tobacco industry. CLICK HERE to learn more and see who’s taken the pledge.

Who We Are

The Out Against Big Tobacco Coalitions, supported by Equality California Institute, are alliances of LGBTQ+ individuals and community organizations collectively working to address tobacco control and health inequity issues within California’s LGBTQ+ community.

Our Accomplishments

  • Our work to remove Big Tobacco from State politics was featured in a December 2021 article in the Bay Area Reporter.

  • In February of 2021, West Hollywood City Councilmembers voted unanimously to pass an ordinance that prohibited the sale of flavored tobacco products and the use of tobacco coupons and discounts.

  • One of our coalition members published a piece in QVoiceNews about the need for tobacco related research on transgender communities titled, “Research, data on transgender tobacco use needed.”
  • We hosted a discussion about LGBTQ+ health and Pride with community members titled, “Taking Pride in our Health Townhall,” on June 9th, 2021.
  • This video addresses the impact of tobacco use on gender affirming care and transition for gender diverse communities.
  • OUT Against Big Tobacco 2021 Research Publication, titled, “Tobacco Control as an LGBTQ+ Issue: Knowledge, Attitudes, and Recommendations from LGBTQ+ Community Leaders.”
  • OUT Against Big Tobacco 2020 Research Publication titled, “Perceptions About Flavored Tobacco Policies and Smoking Behaviors by Age, Gender and Sexual Orientation in the LGBTQ Population in Los Angeles County.”

Tools to Quit Tobacco

Smoking and vaping could increase the risk of developing a serious or critical COVID-19 infection. The rate of tobacco use in the LGBTQ+ community is more than twice as high as our non-LGBTQ+ peers, putting our community at higher risk of contracting COVID-19 and developing a more severe infection. Take this time to quit tobacco products.

Tips, tricks, and resources to quitting tobacco while in quarantine

  • You don’t have to do this alone. Call on friends and family (chosen or otherwise) to
    be a care team and support network. Get inspired by following Smoke Free
    motivational accounts on Instagram such as SmokeFreeUS.
  • Use this time to quit. There are several California-specific and national programs
    waiting to help you quit. You can access the programs that are right for you via
    phone, text, or an app including:

For more information on how Equality California is continuing our work during the COVID-19 crisis, click here.


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