News and Events

The Tobacco Free Partnership of Columbia County is Working on Several Tobacco Prevention Policies
March 7, 2021

We welcomed 2021 with a great outlook and a continuance of educating our community leaders and members about the goals and initiatives of the Tobacco Free Partnership of Columbia County.

The partnership had the pleasure of speaking to Senator Jennifer Bradley at the Columbia County Legislation Delegation Meeting on January 19th. This provided an opportunity to inform the Senator about our Community-Based Tobacco Prevention program. Through the Tobacco Free Partnership and Students Working Against Tobacco (SWAT) clubs, we work with our community to promote nicotine-free social norms through advocacy, education, and policy change to prevent the usage of tobacco products by youth and young adults.

Throughout the 5 years our program has been in Columbia County, we have seen a significant decrease in current use of cigarette and smokeless tobacco use among youth and raised awareness of the marketing tactics of tobacco companies that target youth with candy flavored products. We will continue our work to support changes that will protect our youth from a lifetime of addiction through a local Tobacco Retail License. This includes raising the minimum age to purchase tobacco to 21 at the local level, banning the sale of flavored tobacco products, classifying vaping products as tobacco products, and providing compliance checks with enforcement.

During the week of February 21-27th, to observe “Through With Chew Week” within our rural community, not only were our Students Working Against Tobacco members able to raise awareness of the impact of smokeless tobacco at school but our partnership joined in as well. In collaboration with the Lake City Chamber of Commerce, we participated in a golf tournament that gave the partnership an opportunity to engage and educate both golfers and attendees about our education efforts and offer cessation resources. One of our partnership members from Meridian Behavioral Health also came to support efforts and share information on their Mobile Response Team (MRT) that responds to people experiencing a crisis within multiple counties. To learn more about the MRT, visit: Mobile Response Team. We look forward to participating in more community events in the coming months and appreciate the support of our members.

For more information about tobacco retail licensing or if you would like to collaborate on this initiative, please contact Tobacco Free Partnership of Columbia County facilitator, Brooke Frye at 386-984-5669 or More information about the Tobacco Free Partnership of Columbia County is found by visiting