News and Events

Levy Youth Elected to Florida SWAT’s Youth Advocacy Board
June 6, 2020

Students Working Against Tobacco (SWAT) is Florida’s youth tobacco prevention organization. Every county has a SWAT program with youth leaders who work diligently in their schools and alongside the Tobacco Free Partnerships in their communities to educate their peers and decision makers about the impact the tobacco industry has on youth tobacco addiction.

A Levy County SWAT member was recently elected to serve on the Statewide SWAT Youth Advocacy Board (YAB). Jasmin Guerrero is a rising Junior at Chiefland Middle High School and will represent Region 2 and Levy County on the 16-member statewide youth advisory board for the Florida Department of Health’s Bureau of Tobacco Free Florida. Jasmin will bring a unique skillset to the statewide board. She is an accomplished artist and has been a leader in Levy County SWAT for the past four years. 

The SWAT program was recently recognized by the World Health Organization for its Not a Lab Rat Campaign, which is an awareness campaign intended to educate people about the tobacco industry’s efforts to addict teens to e-cigarettes.

“I’m most excited about working on the Not A Lab Rat Campaign,” said Jasmin, “I feel like a lot of teens are vaping and there need to be more boundaries – they are accessing these e-cigarettes too easily.”

     

Jasmin also feels concern about the tobacco industry targeting young people. “I care because my brother and his friends are young, and they have friends who vape,” she said. “I just don’t want to see so many kids addicted to the use of e-cigarettes.”

SWAT clubs have been in nearly every middle and high school of Levy County consistently since 2007 with an average of 200 members. A youth leader from the county has been elected by peers to serve on the statewide SWAT Youth Advocacy Board since 2008.

The Tobacco Free Partnership of Levy County works closely with the local SWAT youth as the county SWAT representative always serves as a Youth Co-Chair for the partnership. Having youth members serve as partnership officers is an important way to make sure their voices are heard in discussions involving youth prevention and policy changes in our communities and the partnership is proud of Jasmin for representing Levy County on the statewide youth board for this upcoming year.