News and Events

The Dixie County Students Working Against Tobacco (SWAT) Chapter to Work on Smoke-Free Local 
September 27, 2022

Dixie County SWAT clubs are excited to be celebrating 15 years of working with the QuitDoc Foundation in Dixie County.  This year has already begun with exciting plans to work on a policy creating Tobacco-Free/Smoke-Free Parks and Beaches in Dixie County and the Town of Cross City.

During the Summer, Governor DeSantis signed House Bill 105 that allow counties and municipalities to regulate smoking at public park and beaches.  This bill updates the Florida Clean Air Act and gives local governments an opportunity to implement new Tobacco Free public spaces that could reduce tobacco use, protect youth and decrease exposure to secondhand smoke. This will allow Dixie County and the Town of Cross City to adopt ordinances that reflects the Tobacco Free Parks and Beaches passed in 2012.  

Across the nation, cigarettes are by far the most littered item in the country.  Here in Florida, for over 30 years, cigarette butts have been the most found item in Ocean Conservancy’s annual Florida beach cleanup.  The Dixie County SWAT youth plan to work with the Tobacco Free Partnership of Dixie County to conduct park and beaches cleanups throughout the county to highlight the need for Dixie County to adopt a Tobacco Free Parks and Beaches Ordinance. 

The Dixie County Anti-Drug Coalition is also excited to be joining the park cleanups to highlight the need for safe and clean play areas in Dixie County.  The combined partnerships working together will promote the need for a policy change to include Electronic Vaping Products.  Vaping devices and accessories are not covered by the Clean Air Act so they could have been prohibited prior to HB105, but the combined need in tobacco/nicotine prevention can be addressed in a county policy.

The first park/beach cleanup will be scheduled in October and will be promoted through, the Tobacco Free Partnership of Dixie County Facebook page and at the schools so that anyone interested in joining can be involved.