Reality Check (program)
Reality Check is a "youth-based, adult mentored" statewide youth program operated by the New York State Department of Health in Albany, New York. Founded in 2001, the goal of the program is to educate "teens about the manipulative marketing practices used by the tobacco industry to get teens to smoke." Thousands of youth across New York have participated in Reality Check activities, which operate in partnership with more than a dozen youth organizations across the state.
Reality Check has been involved in combating depictions of smoking in movies, point of purchase advertisements, and tobacco advertising found in the school setting. They have also participated in global campaigns against tobacco usage, particularly in Africa. They are also active across New York, frequently protesting at school board meetings and taking on the movie industry to end smoking in movies marketed to young people. Their work against movie studios and Hollywood has drawn attention as for them as the "largest group to confront Hollywood" on tobacco usage in children's movies.
The program receives funding primarily from the state Department of Health. According to Cornell University, "Reality Check is NOT against smokers. It is about getting people to understand how tobacco companies manipulate people into smoking and getting hooked."
As of July 31, 2009, the number of Reality Check grants that the New York State Department of Health has been decreased from 46 to 10. As a result of this Monroe, Livingston, Steuben, Chemung, Schuyker, Tompkins, Yates, Seneca, Wayne, Ontario, Cortland, Chenango, Otsego, Delaware, Greene, Ulster, Sullivan, Orange, Rockland, Suffolk, Dutchess, Columbia, Rensselaer, and Washington County are left with no funding for any type of program similar to Reality Checks. Many other counties have exponential decreases in their funding.
- "Contact Us", Tri-County Cessation Center. Retrieved 12/17/07. Note: Look under "Reality Check".
- "Terms and conditions", Reality Check website. Retrieved 12/16/07.
- "Reality Check History", Reality Check website. Retrieved 12/16/07.
- (2003) "Local Reality Check teens protest the use of NYC images in international tobacco advertisements", Takingontobacco.org. Retrieved 12/17/07.
- (2003) "Thousands Of New York Youth Launch A Project That Highlights The Elusive Relationship Between Tobacco And Hollywood", Rennaslauer County Reality Check. Retrieved 12/17/07.
- "Reality Check Youth Action Partners", New York State Department of Health. Retrieved 12/17/07.
- 2002. "Going Global: Statewide Youth Programs Take on Big Tobacco at Home and Abroad". Retrieved 12/16/07.
- "Youth march calls on Nigeria to sign and ratify the FCTC," Part II: Shaking things up in Nigeria. Retrieved 12/17/07.
- Hall, T. (2007) "OHS students tell board about anti-tobacco battle", Oneida Daily Dispatch. 14 November 2007.
- "Thousands Of New York Youth Launch A Project That Highlights The Elusive Relationship Between Tobacco And Hollywood", Rennaslauer County Reality Check. Retrieved 12/17/07.
- "New York's Reality Check Movement Becomes Largest Group to Confront Hollywood on Its Irresponsible Use of Tobacco Products in Films; Youth Wrap Up a Statewide Project Designed to Expose Irresponsible Tobacco Use by Celebrities and Hollywood Executives in Teen-Oriented Movies." Retrieved 12/17/07.
- (2003) "State Awards Additional $553,400 to Youth Empowerment Programs", New York State Department of Health. Retrieved 12/17/07.
- "Reality Check", Cornell University Cooperative Extension Wyoming County. Retrieved 12/17/07.