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Tobacco-free state initiative prompts smoker to quit

Rebecca Mapes
Rebecca Mapes, shown here on a recent vacation to Hawaii, plans to quit smoking by Jan. 1.

Rebecca Mapes started smoking at 15. In the 35 years since, she has quit several times, but this time, she said, she is done for good. Mapes credits her new resolve in part to an Executive Order from Governor John Kitzhaber that will make most state properties tobacco free next year.

"Smokers know the habit is bad – there's nothing good about it. The Governor's ban just helps push that desire to quit a little further. My plan is to stop by January 1," said Mapes, a Community-Based Care Policy Analyst for the Department of Human Services.

"Smokers know that the habit is bad - there is nothing good about it. The Governor's ban just helps push that desire to quit a little further." – Rebecca Mapes, state employee

Governor Kitzhaber's Executive Order will ban all tobacco use on most state properties on Jan. 1, and will create a single statewide policy to transition the state to tobacco-free status by the end of 2013. Creating tobacco-free environments is a key strategy to improve the health of employees, clients and visitors to state properties.

Besides the smoking initiative, Mapes says cost is another motivator for her to quit. She has been spending about $150 a month on cigarettes. And, her boyfriend, who has never smoked, wants her to quit.

"There has also been the socialization aspect of smoking with others in the building," she said. "The ban will disband that and that's another reason for me to quit."

Tobacco Cessation Resources

The Oregon Tobacco Quit Line is a free, telephone and web-based program that helps callers quit tobacco. It offers free confidential, evidence-based counseling and materials. Callers may be eligible for nicotine patches or gum.

The Quit Line is open seven days a week, 4:00 a.m. to 12:00 a.m. (Pacific time)

  • 1-800-QUIT-NOW (1-800-784-8669)
  • Spanish Quit Line: 1-877-2NO-FUME (1-877-266-3863)
  • TTY: 1-877-777-6534
Online: www.quitnow.net/oregon/