Looking for something to do for Veterans Day tomorrow? The Los Angeles County Department of Military and Veterans Affairs has compiled a list of activities Commemorating Veterans Day.
The California Recovery Task Force today announced a new feature on its website, recovery.ca.gov, which allows Californians to map where money from the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act is being spent across California and identify the projects in their area.
To view a map of California showing a breakdown of spending on projects by County, Congressional District, Assembly District, and Senate District, click here. The current map shows data for the first quarter of this year, with the second quarter data to be added in the upcoming weeks. This is an excellent resource to see how many federal dollars have been brought to your area through this stimulus program.
Over the past two decades, Los Angeles County has been a national and international leader in tobacco control and prevention. With a current smoking prevalence of 14%, the County has among the lowest smoking rates of any metropolitan area in the United States. Much of the County’s success in reducing smoking prevalence has been attributed to cigarette tax policy, aggressive anti-smoking media campaigns, smoke free indoor air policies, and other effective local tobacco control programs.
In spite of this success, the Los Angeles County Health Survey reveals that rather than continuing to decline, smoking prevalence among County adult residents has remained fairly steady since 2002. More than one million adults in the County currently smoke cigarettes. Among Los Angeles County teens in grades 9 through 12, the Youth Risk Behavior Survey demonstrated a decline in smoking rates from 26% in 1997 to 12% in 2005. However, as with adult smokers, this downward trend has not continued. Cigarette smoking remains the leading preventable cause of disease and disability, claiming over 8,500 lives — one out of every 7 deaths in Los Angeles County each year. Cigarette smokers may also expose their family members and the general public to secondhand smoke, which causes a broad range of adverse health effects. Tobacco-related diseases cost the County $4.3 billion per year, of which $2.3 billion is for direct healthcare expenditures.
Concerning disparities in smoking rates persist in Los Angeles County, with male adults more likely to smoke than females (19% vs. 10%), and African Americans more likely to smoke than adults in other racial/ethnic groups (25% vs. 15% of whites, 12% of Latinos, and 11% of Asians/Pacific Islanders). Adults who have graduated from college and those with higher incomes are less likely to smoke than are other Angelenos. Targeted efforts are needed to further reduce cigarette smoking, especially among high risk groups.
The Department of Public Health is working with communities throughout Los Angeles County to decrease cigarette smoking and exposure to secondhand smoke. In this report, we examine smoking status across geographic areas in Los Angeles County. We hope this report will serve to inform local governments and communities, and facilitate their efforts to reduce tobacco use and the enormous toll it exacts.
Jonathan E. Fielding, MD, MPH
Director and Health Officer
As you probably know by now, a magnitude 4.4 earthquake occurred this morning at 4:04 a.m. about one (1) mile ENE of the City of Pico Rivera. This was a reminder that we should prepare ourselves for this or any other type of disaster. The Office of Emergency Management (OEM) stated that there was a lot of misinformation in the news this morning on the correct way to protect oneself when an earthquake occurs. This is why OEM has provided a few documents that should be helpful in creating your plans and organizing your emergency kits at home, work or at school and ensuring as a community that we are prepared.
California Task Force 2 (CA-TF2), Los Angeles County Fire’s world-class Heavy Rescue Task Force, has been mobilized for deployment to Chile to help rescue and recover earthquake victims in Latin America, following a 8.8 magnitude earthquake off the coast of Maule, Chili.
Commanders of the 74-member team received the request from the U.S. Agency for International Development Office of Foreign Disaster Assistance (USAID-OFDA), and are currently staging at the Department’s USAR Facility in Pacoima. The team includes two additional rescue team managers, three physicians, three structural specialists, and six rescue canines. In addition, eight USAID members will accompany the team to Chile.
California Task Force 2 (CA-TF2) is a specially-trained and equipped Urban Search and Rescue Task Force consisting of Los Angeles County Fire Department firefighters and paramedics rescue specialists, emergency room physicians, structural engineers, heavy equipment specialists, canine search dogs and handlers, hazardous materials technicians, communications specialists, and logistics specialists. This unique technical rescue team responds with 55,000 pounds of prepackaged search and rescue tools and medical equipment to conduct around-the-clock search and rescue operations at domestic and international disasters, both natural and man-made.
The Los Angeles County Fire Department is one of the largest emergency service agencies in the world, providing fire protection and life safety services to more than 3.8 million residents and commercial business customers in the County’s 2,305-square-mile area, and around the globe when needed. For more information, visit the Department’s website at www.fire.lacounty.gov.
To directly help the Chilean earthquake victims please visit the American Red Cross.