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Environmental influences on tobacco use amg AAPI communities

Institution: Assoc of Asian Pacific Community Health Organizations
Investigator(s): Rod Lew, MPH
Award Cycle: 2004 (Cycle 13) Grant #: 13AT-3000 Award: $311,543
Subject Area: Tobacco-Use Prevention and Cessation
Award Type: Full CARA

Initial Award Abstract
Tobacco use among California’s multiethnic youth is growing, yet there is little research indicating what environmental factors impact use and prevention. Asian Americans and Pacific Islanders (AAPIs) are a very diverse population making up 13% of our state, yet we understand even less about these pro- and anti-tobacco factors.

We propose to conduct a three-year study to understand the environmental influences associated with tobacco use in two AAPI communities: Cambodians and Chamorros. The overall goal of this project is to identify and understand the environmental characteristics associated with tobacco initiation among these two ethnic youth. The specific aims of the study are twofold: 1) to use geographic information system (GIS) mapping to identify, inventory and explore the pro- and anti-tobacco environmental characteristics in two low-income Cambodian and Chamorro populations; and 2) to study the relationship between these environmental characteristics (both pro- and anti-tobacco) and tobacco initiation and use among Cambodian youth. This study hypothesizes that the density of tobacco outlets and other pro-tobacco influences will be higher in low-income AAPI neighborhoods than in higher-income white neighborhoods. In addition, AAPI youth living in neighborhoods with high density of pro-tobacco influences and less access to anti-tobacco resources will have higher tobacco susceptibility and use.

Environmental assessments will be conducted in three geographic areas: Long Beach and Richmond (California), and Seattle (Washington). Individual surveys of youth will be conducted in Long Beach only. Data analysis will be carried out on both the environmental data (using GIS mapping and spatial analytic techniques) and the individual survey (using multivariate techniques) to identify significant factors within each component, as well as the relationship between environmental and individual tobacco use. Findings from this study will inform further multi-level research on the environmental influences on tobacco uptake and use in California’s ethnically diverse youth populations.