LGBT Health - Tobacco Resources

Tobacco: disparities and resources

The American Cancer Society estimates that 21% of Americans smoke, with tobacco accounting for nearly 1 in 5 deaths nationwide and cigarette smoking for at least 30% of all cancer deaths nationwide. Data from Wisconsin indicate that LGBT youth may be particularly susceptible to tobacco use. For example, when compared to their heterosexual counterparts, LGBT youth are:

  • twice as likely to be daily smokers and
  • almost two times as likely to smoke more than 10 cigarettes a day.

While data about smoking rates among LGBT adults in Wisconsin are currently unavailable, national data suggest that lesbians' rates of smoking are about 70% higher than those of heterosexual women, and gay men's smoking rates are about 60% higher than those of heterosexual men.

These disparities have long-term implications for the health of the LGBT community. Researchers believe that these elevated rates of smoking may ultimately result in disparities in other health outcomes, such as cancer and cardiovascular disease.

The following resources are intended to address tobacco use and disparities affecting the LGBT community.

Centers for Disease Control and Prevention -- Tips from Former Smokers
Real stories of Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, and Transgender (LGBT) people who are suffering from smoking-related diseases and disabilities.
Resource availability: Internet

National LGBT Tobacco Control Network
Quit strategies and resources, outreach information, statistics, and scientific literature
Resource availability: Internet

LGBT Health Link
Description: Community-driven network of advocates and professionals focused on enhancing LGBT health by eliminating tobacco use and reducing cancer risk.
Resource availability: Internet

This Free Life
Description: This Free Life campaign focuses on reducing tobacco prevalence among LGBTQ individuals.
Resource availability: Internet

Description: This Wisconsin online resource center has numerous resources and information on LGBTQ tobacco use.
Resource availability: Internet


Last Revised: August 4, 2016