a civil society alliance for combatting chronic disease in the caribbean

Healthy Caribbean Coalition - Caribbean Journalist wins Eighth Interamerican “Vital Air” Journalism Contest

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Tracey Moore winner of the Eighth Interamerican “Vital Air” Journalism ContestThe HCC is proud to showcase one of our own Caribbean journalists leading the way in NCD journalism. The InterAmerican Heart Foundation and the Global Bridges Healthcare Alliance for Tobacco Dependence Treatment recently announced the winners of the Eighth Interamerican “Vital Air” Journalism Contest focusing on Tobacco Dependence Treatment and supporting Article 14 of the World Health Organization’s Framework Convention on Tobacco Control (FCTC).”

The overall Winner and First Place Print - Ms. Tracy Moore of Barbados, a longtime member and valued contributor to the HCC. Ms. Moore's piece was entitled “Smoking Out Tobacco”.

We had a chance to chat with Tracey about her winning submission.

HCC: Why did you enter this competition?
TM: I entered the competition at the insistent encouragement of my friend and Chair Professor Trevor Hassell. He obviously saw something important in what I wrote and I am extremely happy that he did!

HCC: Why was this topic important to you?
TM: It has been something we have been discussing in the NCD Commission since I wrote the first article two years ago about e-cigarettes. So when I wrote the follow-up I wanted to look at what had happened since the law on banning smoking in public places and how possible it would be for a smoke-free Barbados. When I wrote about the e-cigarette - it raised awareness that there MAY be a loop-hole in this law. The newshound in me wanted to examine that loop hole.

HCC: What questions were you seeking to answer?
TM: I had a number of questions: How possible would it be for a smoke-free Barbados (legally) and how it could affect privacy issues; Was the law put in place two years ago really effective? What was the social climate for a smoke-free Barbados especially with the intrusion of e-cigarette products filtering the market; I wanted to know with e-cigarettes being marketed as a safer brand - were they really safer?; Were there any alternative preventative strategies besides a total smoke-fee environment as we also need to look to help those who were addicted.

HCC: What was your approach when putting the piece together?
TM: I wanted to do this knowing that my readers consisted of both smokers and non-smokers so in a non-judgmental, informative and thought-provoking style - and with a restriction not to go over two pages.

You can read the winning entries and the entries of all the participants at www.interamericanheart.org