TULSA, OK – [May 17, 2013] – The Tulsa Health Department’s Regional Prevention Coordinator (RPC) staff with the assistance of trained student volunteers recently conducted Tobacco Reward Reminder Visits (RRV) throughout Tulsa County in March.
61 tobacco retailer establishments were visited during recent RRVs. Of those retail establishments visited only one sold tobacco to a minor, resulting in a compliance rate of 99.9%.
RRVs target retailers within Tulsa County to assess whether they will sell tobacco products to persons under the age of 18. During these visits, trained underage youth attempt to purchase tobacco products. If the retailer sells to a minor, RPC staff will present the retailer with educational materials explaining the laws and penalties associated with selling to a minor. If they do not sell to a minor, RPC staff will reward the retailer with a thank you card for not selling along with a $5 gift card.
All retailers within Tulsa County are sent reminder letters notifying them of upcoming checks along with follow-up letter informing the retailer on how well they performed.
Reward Reminder Visits commend clerks and retailer who refuse to sell tobacco products to minors. This research and evidence-based prevention strategy encourages retailers to comply with Oklahoma’s statues prohibiting the sale of tobacco products to minors.
Regional Prevention Coordinators is a grant funded program established to reduce the rates for underage drinking, adult binge drinking, and the non-medical use of painkillers within Tulsa County. The work of RPC is to focus on population-level change in Tulsa County by assisting communities in determining the substance abuse problems affecting their constituents and the most effective strategies to address these problems. RPC works with local coalitions and stakeholders to gather data, track trends, and provide training and technical assistance within the community. Additionally, RPC provides support for town hall meetings and assists with local alcohol and tobacco compliance operations.
Click here for more information regarding Reward Reminder Visits or the Regional Prevention Coordinator (RPC) program at the Tulsa City-County Health Department.