Horizon, Host: Ted Simons

May 30, 2012


Host: Ted Simons

AlphaStripe.com

  |   Video
  • AlphaStripe.com is a social media company for veterans and military personnel to network and share stories about their service, which was started by ASU students. Learn more about AlphaStripe from its co-founders Eli Chmouni and Matthew Schmidt.
Guests:
  • Eli Chmouni - Student, ASU
  • Matthew Schmidt - Student, ASU
Category: community   |   Keywords: ASU, student, alpha, stripe, website, ,

View Transcript
>>>>> THIS WEEK, WE COMMEMORATED MEMORIAL DAY BY REMEMBERING THE MILITARY MEN AND WOMEN WHO DIED WHILE SERVING OUR COUNTRY. OFTEN, WHEN MILITARY PERSONNEL ARE LOST, THEIR STORIES DIE WITH THEM. BUT A TEAM OF ASU STUDENTS IS TRYING TO CHANGE THAT. IT'S LAUNCHING "ALPHASTRIPE" A NEW SOCIAL MEDIA COMPANY THAT HELPS VETERANS AND OTHERS IN THE MILITARY CONNECT AND SHARE THEIR STORIES ON-LINE. JOINING ME TO TALK ABOUT THEIR NEW VENTURE IS ELI CHMOUNI, COFOUNDER AND CEO OF ALPHASTRIPE AND PETE CHINNICI, CO-FOUNDER AND CHIEF MARKETING OFFICER. GREAT TO HAVE YOU HERE. THANK YOU FOR JOINING US. I GAVE A BASIC OUTLINE HERE. GIVE ME A BETTER DEFINITION OF WHAT ALPHASTRIPE IS?

>>>> IT'S AN ON-LINE PLATFORM THAT ALLOWS ANYONE THAT'S BEEN IN CONFLICT ESPECIALLY MILITARY, FAMILY, FRIENDS AND SUPPORTERS OR HUMANITARIAN AID GROUPS IN VIDEO, PHOTO AND AUDIO TEXT FORMAT.

>>>> YOU'VE GOT BASICALLY -- YOU CAN SPEAK, WRITE OR SHARE PHOTOGRAPHS? VIDEO? THE WHOLE NINE YARDS, RIGHT?

>>>> ABSOLUTELY.

>>>> YOU UPLOAD THIS STUFF? HOW'S IT WORK?

>>>> YOU WOULD GO ON, CREATE AN ACCOUNT, REGISTER, PUT YOUR UNIT INFORMATION, PAST SERVICES HISTORY, ANYTHING THAT'S RELEVANT TO YOUR TIME IN THE MILITARY. AT THAT POINT, WOULD YOU CREATE A POST. WOULD YOU GO AHEAD AND UPLOAD AUDIO OR VIDEO FORMAT IF YOU HAD IT OR PHOTOS. ANYTHING THAT WOULD DEFINE YOUR STORY AND WHAT YOUR PART IN THE CONFLICT WAS.

>>>> THIS IS OPEN TO MILITARY AND CIVILIANS?

>>>> VETERANS, SUPPORTERS, ANYONE IN A CONFLICT AS WELL AS HUMANITARIAN GROUPS.

>>>> HOW DO YOU DEFINE THAT? ANYONE IN A CONFLICT. CIVILIANS IN SYRIA RIGHT NOW COULD HAVE SOME SORT OF ANGLE ON THIS?

>>>> EXACTLY. EVERY SINGLE CULTURE IN OUR WORLD HAS BEEN IN CONFLICT. THIS IS REALLY A GLOBAL PLATFORM. WE'RE AIMING AT MAKING IT A GLOBAL PLATFORM THAT ALLOWS ANYONE REALLY TO DOCUMENT THOSE STORIES, BECAUSE CIVILIANS, WHETHER THEY'RE JUST FLEEING A CONFLICT, THEY HAVE A STORY TO SHARE. OR SOMEONE WHO WAS ENTERING AS A SOLDIER, THEY HAVE A STORY TO SHARE.

>>>> THIS IS BETA TESTING SO FAR?

>>>> WE'RE IN PRIVATE BETA RIGHT NOW. WE HAVE A SPECIAL GROUP OF TESTERS WHO ARE USING THE SITE ON FRIDAY, IT'LL BE PUBLIC BETA.

>>>> OK, WHAT KIND OF STORIES ARE YOU HEARING MOST?

>>>> RIGHT NOW, A LOT OF THE FOOTAGE IS HEAVILY PREDOMINANT FROM IRAQ AND AFGHANISTAN BECAUSE THOSE ARE THE TWO RECENT WARS. WE HAVE FOOTAGE FROM SYRIA AND YEMEN AS WELL AS LEBANON.

>>>> WHAT ARE PEOPLE SAYING WITH THE FOOTAGE? WHAT KIND OF MESSAGE ARE THEY TRYING TO GET ACROSS?

>>>> BASICALLY AN UNDERSTANDING OF WHAT IT WAS LIKE TO BE THERE AND HAVE A FIRSTHAND ACCOUNT OF WHAT THEY SAW AS OPPOSED TO WHAT YOU SEE OVER JUST THE LEFTOVER MEDIA PORTIONS. THEY GET TO PUT UP WHAT THEY SAW, HOW IT HAPPENED AND ALSO THEIR LITTLE DETAILS, LITTLE EMOTIONS AND PARTS OF IT THAT YOU DON'T REALLY GET TO GET FROM A NEWSCAST, SOMETHING YOU WOULD HAVE TO HEAR FROM THE PERSON THAT WAS INVOLVED WITH IT.

>>>> BUT SOMETIMES -- YOU KNOW, OBVIOUSLY, WHEN YOU HEAR SOMETHING FROM A NEWSCAST, NEWS ORGANIZATIONS DO THEIR BEST TO MAKE SURE IT'S ACCURATE AND BOTH SIDES ARE HEARD AND THESE SORTS OF THINGS. HOW DO YOU DECIDE WHAT GOES ON THERE AND WHAT DOESN'T GO ON THERE?

>>>> IT'S REALLY AN OPEN PLATFORM. IF A PERSON HAS A STORY TO SHARE WE'RE REALLY FOCUSING ON THE HUMAN AS A PERSON AND HIS STORY TO SHARE NOT REALLY POLITICAL KIND OF PUSH ON IT. SO IF THE PERSON HAS A STORY TO SHARE, THEY CAN UPLOAD IT AND MAKE IT PRIVATE OR MAKE IT PUBLIC. BECAUSE SOME OF THE FOOTAGE THAT MIGHT BE UPLOADED COULD BE GRAPHIC AND THE SOLDIER COULD DECIDE TO SHARE THAT, HEY, I WANT TO SHARE THIS ONLY WITH MY UNIT MEMBERS, NOT REALLY THE PUBLIC.

>>>> YEAH.

>>>> THEY CAN DO THAT? IT COULD BE CLOSED OFF IN CERTAIN WAYS?

>>>> YES, THEY CAN MAKE ONLY SPECIAL PEOPLE IN THE NETWORK SEE THAT CONTENT OR MAKE IT PUBLIC AND IT SHOWS UP ON THE FRONT SCREEN.

>>>> JUDGING WHAT I SAW SO FAR, THIS IS ALMOST A NEWS PORTAL. THIS IS ALMOST YOU'RE GETTING INFORMATION, YOU'RE GETTING EQUIPMENT INFORMATION AND PERSONNEL INFORMATION, ALL SORTS THINGS. IT'S ALMOST LIKE STARS AND STRIPES GOING ON HERE ON THE AIR.

>>>> IT'S ALMOST LIKE THERE'S NO LONGER A DELAY HEARING THE BATTLE AFTER THE BATTLE WAS FOUGHT BUT IT'S HAPPENING RIGHT NOW LIVE. YOU'RE GETTING THE FOOTAGE AS IT'S COMING IN AND AS THE CONFLICT IS OCCURRING.

>>>> HOW'D THIS IDEA GET STARTED?

>>>> STARTED SIX MONTHS AGO. WE STARTED SEEING A LOT OF VETERANS COMING BACK AND WE REALLY DIDN'T HEAR THEM FROM A CIVILIAN SIDE WHAT KIND OF CONFLICTS AND ISSUES THEY WENT THROUGH. KNOWING THAT 30% OF THE HOMELESS POPULATION IS FROM VETS AND EVERY EIGHTH VET COMMITS SUICIDE. CIVILIANS DON'T UNDERSTAND THAT I MET PETER A YEAR AGO. I STARTED TALKING TO HIM, HIS MARINE EXPERIENCE IN IRAQ. I STARTED TO REALIZE IF I JUST SEE HIM ON THE STREET, I DON'T UNDERSTAND WHAT KIND OF ISSUES HE GOES THROUGH. PERSONALLY I WAS RAISED IN A CHRISTIAN FAMILY IN LEBANON. I CAME HERE SIX YEARS AGO BECAUSE WE FLED THAT CONFLICT. SO I HAD A PERSONAL CONNECTION TO IT AND ALL OF OUR CO-FOUNDER REALLY HAVE CONFLICT STORIES WE WANT TO SHARE. WE STARTED TEAMING UP WITH OLDER VETS. SO FOR EXAMPLE THE FIRST WEEK OF FEBRUARY, THE LAST SOLDIER OF THE FIRST WORLD WAR PASSED AWAY. WE KIND OF LOST CONNECTION WITH THAT ERA AND YOUR GRANDKIDS AND YOUR KIDS WON'T BE ABLE TO UNDERSTAND WHAT'S IT MEAN TO BE LIKE IN THAT WAR.

>>>> AND WHAT SOCIAL MEDIA MODELS WERE YOU LOOKING AT? WHAT WAS INSPIRING YOU? DID YOU LOOK AT SOMETHING OUT THERE AND GO, THAT'S WHAT WE NEED BUT ONLY IN A MORE MILITARY FASHION?

>>>> WE TOOK A SLIGHTLY DIFFERENT APPROACH. WHAT WE DID IS ACTUALLY STARTED CONTACTING VETERANS AND USING THE BACKGROUND FROM MYSELF AS WELL AS OTHER VETERANS THAT HAVE WORKED WITH THE PROJECT AND KIND OF ASKED, YOU KNOW, IF YOU WERE ABLE TO TELL YOUR SIDE OF THE STORY AND WHAT YOU EXPERIENCED, WHAT WOULD MAKE YOU COMFORTABLE TELLING THAT STORY? HOW WOULD YOU BE ABLE TO DO IT AND STILL NOT FEEL LIKE YOU'RE EXPOSING TOO MUCH OF YOUR PERSONAL STORY?

>>>> I WAS GOING TO SAY, HOW DO YOU MAKE SURE YOU'RE NOT EXPOSING TOO MUCH OF MILITARY OPERATIONS? OF THINGS THAT THE MILITARY WOULD RATHER YOU NOT LET LOOSE OUT THERE AND IS NOT LET OTHER FOLKS AROUND THE WORLD KNOW?

>>>> ABSOLUTELY. THERE'S A HEAVY SECURITY ELEMENT TO IT JUST BECAUSE OF THAT NATURE BUT WHAT WE DO IS WE TRY TO ALLEVIATE THAT BY LETTING THEM POST UP CONTENT THAT'S NOT NECESSARILY TODAY AS OF THIS VERY MOMENT. THERE ARE ALSO SCREENING PROCESSES AS FAR AS HOW THEY'RE ALLOWED TO POST-UP THINGS AND WHAT TYPE OF INFORMATIONAL SECURITY INFORMATION THEY CAN POST.

>>>> PETE, YOU'RE A MARINE, YOU'RE AN ASU STUDENT AND ASU WAS INVOLVED IN THIS SOMEHOW. EXPLAIN, PLEASE.

>>>> I'M PART OF THE PROGRAM AT SMU. I HAD MY OWN PRODUCTION, BLUE DREAM MEDIA COMPANY. WE JUST WON FOR 2012-2013. THAT GIVES US OFFICE SPACE IN THE FACILITY AND MENTORSHIP. I BELIEVE THE REASON WE'RE HERE TODAY AND COULD LAUNCH BETA SO FAST WITHIN SIX MONTHS IS BECAUSE OF ALL THE SUPPORT THE ASU VENTURE PROGRAM HAS PROVIDED IN TERMS MARKETING, MENTORSHIP AND CONNECTIONS TO NAME BRANDS LIKE MICROSOFT THAT'S INVOLVED AND WANTS TO SUPPORT IN PAUSE AND OTHER CONNECTIONS THAT PROPELS US FORWARD.

>>>> YOU GOT A SPOT AT SKY SONG FOR HOW LONG NOW?

>>>> HOW MUCH DOES THE INTERNET PRINTING AND OTHER THINGS COST? HOW DO YOU MAKE MONEY ON SOMETHING LIKE THIS?

>>>> UM, IT'S KIND OF A FLUID MODEL RIGHT NOW. WE'RE STILL WORKING ON IT AND TRYING TO ESTABLISH WHAT WE'RE DOING. ELI WOULD PROBABLY BE BEST TO.

>>>> WE LOOKED AT MANY MODELS, ONE IS A PREMIUM MEMBERSHIP. IF YOU WANT TO STORE MORE MEMORIES, THAT REQUIRES A PREMIUM MEMBERSHIP. REALLY OUR NETWORK COMBINES TOP FUNCTIONALITY FROM DIFFERENT NETWORKS. WE HAVE THE FACEBOOK FUNCTIONALITY AND YOU TUBE PLATFORM AND RECORDINGS OF HISTORY AND FAMILY TREE AND PINTEREST, THE ABILITY TO POST STORIES REALLY FAST. THAT'S COUPLED WITH THE JOBS PLATFORM AND A BIG SERGEANT MENTORSHIP PROGRAM THAT ALLOWS MILITARY MEMBERS WHO ARE LEFT TO MENTOR PEOPLE WHO JUST GOT OUT OF THE MILITARY IN ORDER TO EASE THE TRANSITION FROM MILITARY TO CIVILIAN LIFE.

>>>> SOUNDS LIKE QUITE THE OPERATION. GOOD LUCK TO BOTH OF YOU WITH THE VENTURE. SOUNDS VERY PROMISING. THANK YOU, BOTH.

Expanding Medical Marijuana

  |   Video
  • The Arizona Department of Health Services recently took public testimony about adding debilitating medical conditions to the state‚Äôs medical marijuana program. ADHS Director Will Humble provides an update.
Guests:
  • Will Humble - Director, The Arizona Department of Health Services
Category: Medical/Health   |   Keywords: medical, marijuana, ,

View Transcript
Ted Simons: STATE HEALTH DEPARTMENT RECENTLY HEARD FROM THOSE WHO WANT TO ADD DEPRESSION, ANXIETY AND OTHER MEDICAL CONDITIONS TO THE LIST OF DISORDERS COVERED BY THE STATE'S MEDICAL MARIJUANA PROGRAM. HERE WITH MORE ON THAT AND OTHER MEDICAL MARIJUANA ISSUES IS WILL HUMBLE, DIRECTOR OF THE ARIZONA DEPARTMENT OF HEALTH SERVICES. GOOD TO SEE YOU AGAIN. THANK YOU FOR JOINING US.

Will Humble: THANK YOU FOR THE INVITATION.

Ted Simons: SO THIS IDEA OF EXTENDING CONDITIONS, WHAT'S THIS ALL ABOUT?

Will Humble: THIS WAS A LITTLE KNOWN ASPECT OF THE LAW THAT PEOPLE VOTED INTO LAW NOVEMBER 10TH WHICH REQUIRES US TO HEAR PETITIONS FROM THE PUBLIC TO ADD NEW DEBILITATING MEDICAL CONDITIONS PERIODICALLY. OUR FIRST ROUND OF PETITIONS ACTUALLY WENT IN IN JANUARY. WE HAD OUR HEARINGS LAST WEEK AND WE HAVE ANOTHER, SAY, MONTH OR SO TO DECIDE WHAT TO DO WHETHER TO ADD THESE NEW MEDICAL CONDITIONS OR TO WAIT PENDING FURTHER EVIDENCE.

Ted Simons: AND, AGAIN, ANXIETY, POST TRAUMATIC STRESS, DEPRESSION, MIGRAINES?

Will Humble: RIGHT AND DEPRESSION, GENERALIZED ANXIETY DISORDER, MIGRAINES AND PTSD.

Ted Simons: IF ONE OR ALL OF THOSE ARE INCLUDED ON THE LIST AT A LATER DATE, CAN ONE OR ALL OF THOSE BE REMOVED?

Will Humble: NO, AND THAT'S AN INTERESTING POINT WHICH IS THIS IS PRETTY MUCH A ONE-WAY STREET, WHICH IS ONE OF THE REASONS I WANT TO BE CAREFUL ABOUT ADDING NEW MEDICAL CONDITIONS, BECAUSE ONCE A DIRECTOR OF THIS AGENCY ADDS A NEW MEDICAL CONDITION, IT'S THERE FOR GOOD. THERE'S NO PETITION PROCESS IN THE LAW TO PULL CONDITIONS OUT. I WANT TO MAKE SURE THERE'S GOOD WEIGHT OF MEDICAL EVIDENCE BEFORE WE ADD ANY OF THE MEDICAL CONDITIONS. WE'VE GOTTEN A LOT OF PUBLIC COMMENT, SOME OF WHICH HAS ACTUAL RESEARCH STUDIES TIED TO IT SO THERE IS SOME EVIDENCE BUT I WANT TO MAKE SURE I'M DOING MY DUE DILIGENCE AND LOOKING AT GOOD, SOUND SCIENCE.

Ted Simons: WHAT DID YOU HEAR REGARDING THE PROS AND THE CONS REGARDING EXTENDED DISORDERS?

Will Humble: THE WRITTEN COMMENTS WE'VE GOTTEN IN THROUGH THE WEB SITE AND THE MAIL HAVE BEEN MORE SORT OF SCIENTIFIC WHERE THEY'RE ESTABLISHING SOME STUDIES THAT MAY HAVE BEEN PUBLISHED HERE OR THERE AT THE HEARING WE HAD LAST WEEK, IT WAS MORE SORT OF ANECDOTAL STORIES THAT FOLKS TOLD WHERE MARIJUANA HAD HELPED THEM OR THEIR SPOUSE WITH ONE OF THESE KINDS OF MEDICAL CONDITIONS, PTSD OR MIGRAINES AND THOSE SORTS THINGS, SO YOU KNOW, IT'S COMPELLING EVIDENCE TO SIT AND LISTEN TO THOSE KINDS OF STORIES BUT IT'S NOT THE FULL RANGE OF SCIENCE THAT I'M LOOKING FOR, YOU KNOW TO ACTUALLY ADD A MEDICAL CONDITION. BUT WE'RE GOING TO LOOK AT THE FULL PUBLIC RECORD. YOU KNOW, I WANT TO LOOK AT ALL THE EVIDENCE BEFORE I MAKE UP MY MIND.

Ted Simons: AND THOSE AGAINST EXPANDING THE LIST, WHAT DID THEY HAVE TO SNAPE.

Will Humble: THERE WERE ALL OF THESE COUPLE CHARACTERS THERE. YOU KNOW, THE ROOM WAS PRETTY WELL STACKED WITH FOLKS THAT REALLY WANTED TO ADD MEDICAL CONDITIONS SO THE COUPLE GUYS THAT WERE THERE, LELAND FAIRBANKS WAS ONE, YOU MIGHT HAVE HAD HIM ON THE SHOW --

Ted Simons: SURE, SURE.
Will Humble: -- HE'S QUITE A CHARACTER. HE HAD THE GUTS TO GO. NOT MANY VERY OTHER PEOPLE DID.

Ted Simons: THEIR CONCERN WAS SAFETY ISSUES AND MAYBE UNDERLYING CONDITIONS THAT MIGHT BE MASKED BY MARIJUANA? THESE SORTS OF THINGS?

Will Humble: RIGHT, SO ONE OF THE CONSIDERATIONS IS WHEN YOU ADD A MEDICAL CONDITION, LET'S SAY IT'S PTSD OR LET'S SAY IT'S DEPRESSION, YOU CAN GIVE THE IMPRESSION TO FOLKS IT'S AN ACTUAL FIRST-LINE TREATMENT FOR THAT MEDICAL CONDITION, SO TAKE DEPRESSION, FOR EXAMPLE, LET'S SAY WE ADDED DEPRESSION. YOU KNOW, I STILL MIGHT, UM, BUT IF WE WERE TO ADD THAT, PEOPLE MIGHT THINK, WELL, INSTEAD OF GOING TO MY PSYCHIATRIST OR SEEKING HELP, I'M GOING TO JUST GET A MEDICAL MARIJUANA CARD BECAUSE I'M UNINSURED OR FOR WHATEVER REASON AND THINK THAT'S A FRONT-LINE TREATMENT AND THEN GET MORE DEPRESSED BECAUSE ALL IT REALLY DOES IS MASK THE SYMPTOMS TEMPORARILY. THEN YOU MIGHT END UP WITH A TRAGIC SUICIDE OR SOMETHING LIKE THAT THAT WAS PREVENTABLE HAD THE PERSON SOUGHT THE RIGHT KIND OF PSYCHIATRIC TREATMENT SO I WANT TO BE CAREFUL NOT TO GIVE THE IMPRESSION THAT THIS IS A FRONT-LINE TREATMENT THAT WORKS UNLESS THERE'S FULL MEDICAL EVIDENCE THAT IT IS.

Ted Simons: AGAIN, THE JULY DECISION THERE?

Will Humble: MID-JULY, RIGHT.

Ted Simons: ALL RIGHT. IN MID-AUGUST OR EARLY AUGUST OR SOMETHING THIS WHOLE DISPENSARY THING IS SO COMPLICATED. YOUR DEADLINE WAS FRIDAY, RIGHT?

Will Humble: RIGHT.

Ted Simons: AS FAR AS APPLICATIONS?

Will Humble: RIGHT.

Ted Simons: HOW MANY FOLKS APPLIED TO BE TO BECOME MEDICAL MARIJUANA DISPENSERS?

Will Humble: ALMOST 500. 483 APPLICANTS FOR EACH ONE OF THESE 126 ZONES WE HAVE, CALL IT COMMUNITY HEALTH ANALYSIS AREAS AROUND THE STATE. WE SET ASIDE, OH A DOZEN OR SO FOR THE TRIBAL AREAS AND WE DIDN'T GET ANY APPLICATIONS THERE. SO THERE WERE SOME AREAS OF THE STATE WHERE WE GOT NO APPLICATIONS. SO WE'RE PROBABLY LOOKING AT AWARDING BETWEEN 90 AND 100 DISPENSARY APPLICATIONS ON AUGUST 2ND. SOME OF THE AREAS WERE VERY COMPETITIVE LIKE AROUND ASU, U OF A, NAU, SHOW LOW FOR SOME REASON WAS A COMPETITIVE AREA AND THERE WERE OTHER PARTS OF THE STATE LIKE SUN CITY WHERE THERE WAS JUST ONE APPLICATION AND SO FOR AREAS LIKE SUN CITY, IF THAT PERSON'S APPLICATION IS COMPLETE AND GOOD, THEY'RE GOING TO GET THE APPLICATION -- BUT FOR AROUND ASU, I DON'T KNOW, 13 OR SOMETHING LIKE THAT, THERE'LL BE A RANDOM SELECTION ON AUGUST 7TH. ONLY ONE OF THEM WILL GET THE AWARD.

Ted Simons: IT'S BASICALLY A LOTTERY, ISN'T IT?

Will Humble: WE BOUGHT THE MACHINES. I DON'T THINK WE'VE GOT THEM YET IN HOUSE BUT THEY ARE THE FLOATING BALL MACHINES.

Ted Simons: OH MY GOODNESS. GOING TELEVISE IT?

Will Humble: WE'LL GO LIVE VIDEO STREAM, YEAH.

Ted Simons: ALL RIGHT, AUGUST 7TH COMES, 126 DISTRICTS AROUND THE STATE, AM I CORRECT ON THAT?

Will Humble: THAT'S RIGHT.

Ted Simons: EVERYONE SET, WHEN AUGUST 8TH HAPPENS, WHAT? DOES THE MARIJUANA START FLOWING OUT? WHAT IS THE TIMING?

Will Humble: WHAT THEY GET THEN IS A REGISTRATION CERTIFICATE THAT ALLOWS THEM TO BUILD OUT THEIR DISPENSARY, OK? AND HOWEVER LONG IT TAKES IS UP TO THEM. THEY COULD CALL US FOR A FINAL INSPECTION WHICH IS WHEN THEY'LL GET THEIR OPERATING PERMIT WHEN EVERYTHING'S IN ORDER. WE'LL DO A CHECKLIST TO MAKE THE INVENTORY CONTROL BUSINESS PLAN, THE I.T. SYSTEM, MAKE SURE EVERYTHING IS IN ORDER. WHEN IT IS, WE'LL GIVE THEM THEIR ACTUAL LICENSE. WE'RE PROBABLY LOOKING AT THE FIRST DISPENSARIES OPENING LABOR DAYISH.

Ted Simons: OK, LAST QUESTION, IS THE PROGRAM PAYING FOR ITSELF? IT SOUNDS LIKE 500 APPLICANTS, THEY ALL HAVE TO SPEND SOMETHING LIKE $5,000 OR SOMETHING ALONG THOSE LINES?

Will Humble: YES.

Ted Simons:THEY'RE NOT GETTING IT ALL BACK, ARE THEY?

Will Humble: NO. WE GOT MORE APPLICATIONS THAN I ANTICIPATED. I ASKED MY FINANCIAL STAFF TO LOOK INTO WHAT WAS THE REVENUE STREAM? IT WAS UP TO CLOSE TO $2 MILLION IN THE PAST FEW WEEKS FOR THESE APPLICATIONS. WE HAVE $1 MILLION OR SO IN THE BANK FROM THE CARDS WE SET THE RULES RIGHT NOW STATE IT'LL BE $1,000 REFUND FOR ANYONE WHO DOESN'T GET A LICENSE. WE'RE LOOKING INTO WHETHER WE CAN EXPAND THAT A LITTLE BIT THROUGH THE REGULATIONS. DO IT LEGALLY, BECAUSE YOU HAVE TO DO EVERYTHING SQUARE, YOU KNOW? I DIDN'T ANTICIPATE 500 APPLICATIONS AND $2 MILLION IN REVENUE. IT'S MORE THAN I THOUGHT WE'D GET.

Ted Simons: INTERESTING. YOU HAVE A BUSY SUMMER AHEAD OF YOU. GOOD STUFF. GOOD INFORMATION. THANK YOU FOR BEING HERE.

Will Humble: THANKS.

Smoke-Free Arizona Act

  |   Video
  • In 2006, Arizona voters passed an initiative that prohibits smoking in most public places. We take a look at the impact of the Smoke-Free Arizona Act five years after it went into effect. Guests include Bill Pfeiffer, President and CEO of the American Lung Association of the Southwest and Harmony Duport who is responsible for enforcing the Act for the Arizona Department of Health Services.
Guests:
  • Bill Pfeiffer - President, CEO, American Lung Association of the Southwest
  • Harmony Duport - Arizona Department of Health Services
Category: Law   |   Keywords: medical, health, smoking, free, act, ,

View Transcript
TOMORROW IS WORLD NO TOBACCO DAY. TOMORROW IS ALSO THE FIVE-YEAR ANNIVERSARY OF THE SMOKE-FREE ARIZONA ACT, A MEASURE PASSED BY VOTERS THAT BANS SMOKING IN MOST ENCLOSED PUBLIC PLACES. HERE TO TALK ABOUT THE ARIZONA LAW AND EFFORTS TO FURTHER CURB SMOKING IS HARMONY DUPORT WHO OVERSEES SMOKE-FREE ARIZONA AS HEAD OF THE OFFICE OF INSPECTION AND COMPLIANCE FOR THE DEPARTMENT OF STATE SERVICES AND BILL PFEIFER, PRESIDENT AND CEO OF THE AMERICAN LUNG ASSOCIATION OF THE SOUTHWEST. GOOD TO HAVE YOU BOTH HERE, THANK YOU FOR JOINING US.

>>>> GREAT TO BE HERE.

>>>> THANK YOU.

>>>> WHAT EXACTLY DOES THIS LAW SAY?

>>>> WANT TO GO AHEAD WITH THAT ONE?

>>>> HELPED TO WRITE THE LAW SO, YES.

>>>> PLEASE DO.

>>>> FIRST OF ALL, YOU STATED IT. PROHIBITS SMOKING IN ALL ENCLOSED PUBLIC PLACES AND WORK PLACES INCLUDING ALL RESTAURANTS AND BARS. IT'S KIND OF FUNNY BECAUSE WE THINK ABOUT IT AND IT'S BEEN FIVE YEARS AGO. AS WE TALK TO PEOPLE IN PUBLIC, THEY SAY, GOSH, I CAN'T REMEMBER THE DAY WHEN PEOPLE COULD SMOKE IN A RESTAURANT OR BAR OR IN A WORKPLACE IN ARIZONA. IT'S ALMOST FOREIGN NOW.

>>>> WHAT GOT THIS WHOLE MOVEMENT STARTED?

>>>> WELL IT GOES WAY BACK, IT GOES BACK TO THE EARLY SURGEON GENERALS' REPORTS IN THE EARLY 60'S THAT SAYS, HEY, THERE'S A LINK BETWEEN SECONDHAND SMOKE AND THE HEALTH OF THE GENERAL PUBLIC. THAT'S WHAT REALLY GOT IT STARTED AND WE EVEN GO BACK TO THE EARLY 80'S, BACK WHEN YOU COULD STILL SMOKE ON AN AIRPLANE, NOW, WE NEVER EVEN THINK ABOUT SMOKING ON AN AIRPLANE.

>>>> IF I REMEMBER CORRECTLY, LOFTS CITIES AROUND THE STATE WERE ENACTING SMOKING BANS. THE CONCERN WAS BUSINESSES MIGHT CROSS THE LINE OR IT WOULDN'T BE EQUITABLE AND THAT SORT OF THING. THAT WAS A FACTOR, TOO, WASN'T IT?

>>>> IT WAS, DEFINITELY. THERE WAS AN ECONOMIC IMPACT STUDY DONE AFTER THE LAW WENT INTO EFFECT, THOUGH AND SHOWED THERE WAS NO REAL NO SIGNIFICANT IMPACT ON BUSINESSES AFTER THE LAW WAS PASSED STATEWIDE.

>>>> I WAS GOING TO SAY, I SAW A RECENT STUDY THAT 70% OF BUSINESS OWNERS ACTUALLY NOW APPRECIATE THE LAWS.

>>>> YOU KNOW. THAT'S THE BOTTOM LINE. WE KNEW THAT WAS GOING TO HAPPEN, BECAUSE WE SAW THAT IN OTHER STATES THAT DID PASS COMPREHENSIVE LAWS IS THAT THE GENERAL PUBLIC WOULD ACCEPT IT. THE BUSINESSES WOULD ACCEPT IT. THERE WOULDN'T BE A NEGATIVE IMPACT ON A BUSINESS. AND THERE WOULD BE SUCH A POSITIVE IMPACT ON PUBLIC HEALTH IN THE STATE.

>>>> THE IMPACT ON PUBLIC HEALTH OF THE STATE, DO WE HAVE ANY METRICS? ANY IDEAS HERE?

>>>> YEAH, THERE WAS. ACTUALLY, SHORTLY AFTER THE LAW WENT INTO EFFECT, TWO RESEARCHERS FROM THE UNIVERSITY OF ARIZONA DID A PUBLIC HEALTH STUDY AND REALLY FROM THE PERIOD OF MAY 2007 TO MAY 2008, ABOUT A 12-13-MONTH PERIOD, THEY STUDIED HOSPITAL ADMISSIONS AND REALLY WHAT THEY FOUND WAS THAT HOSPITAL ADMISSIONS AS A RESULT OF CARDIOVASCULAR DISEASE, ASTHMA AND ANGINA ALL DECREASED AND THEY ATTRIBUTED THAT TO THE SMOKE-FREE ARIZONA LAW GOING INTO EFFECT. MORE IMPORTANTLY WAS THE ECONOMIC IMPACT OF THOSE REDUCED HOSPITAL ADMISSIONS, 16.8 MILLION DOLLARS THEY ESTIMATE WERE SAVED IN THAT 13-MONTH PERIOD.

>>>> NOW, AS FAR AS THE LAW IS CONCERNED AND COMPLAINTS REGISTERED, WHAT DID YOU SEE WHEN THE LAW FIRST PASSED? HOW MANY COMPLAINTS ARE YOU SEEING NOW?

>>>> WELL, THE FIRST MONTH AFTER THE LAW WENT INTO EFFECT IN MAY 2007, WE RECEIVED AROUND 1,500 COMPLAINTS THAT FIRST MONTH. NOW, ANNUALLY, WE'RE RECEIVING AROUND 1,500 COMPLAINTS SO COMPLAINT NUMBERS HAVE DROPPED SIGNIFICANTLY STATEWIDE.

>>>> WHAT ARE MOST OF THOSE COMPLAINTS? WHAT DO YOU HEAR MOST OFTEN?

>>>> MOST COMPLAINTS THAT COME IN ARE REGARDING PEOPLE SMOKING TOO CLOSE TO THE ENTRANCES SO SMOKING WITHIN 20 FEET OF AN ENTRANCE OR HAVING AN ASHTRAY THAT'S PLACED WITHIN 20 FEET OF AN ENTRANCE. SMOKING AND ASH TRAYS HAVE TO BE MORE THAN 20 FEET AWAY FROM ENTRANCES.

>>>> INTERESTING. UM, WHEN INSPECTORS GO OUT TO THESE ESTABLISHMENTS, WHAT ARE THEY LOOKING FOR? I GUESS THEY'RE LOOKING FOR ASH TRAYS CLOSER THAN 20 FEET BUT WHAT ELSE ARE THEY LOOKING FOR?

>>>> THEY'RE LOOKING FOR THAT. ALSO THEY'RE LOOKING AT BUSINESSES ARE SIGNED APPROPRIATELY. EVERY BUSINESS HAS TO HAVE A SIGN THAT NOTIFIES THE PUBLIC THAT SMOKING IS NOT ALLOWED WITHIN 20 FEET OF THE ENTRANCE AND NOT ALLOWED INSIDE THE ESTABLISHMENT. THEY'RE LOOKING AT THAT. THEY'RE LOOKING LIKE YOU HAD MENTIONED AT ASH TRAYS TO MAKE SURE THEY'RE PLACED APPROPRIATELY AND OF COURSE, MAKING SURE PEOPLE AREN'T SMOKING WHERE PROHIBITED WHETHER IT'S INSIDE OR OUTSIDE OR WITHIN 20 FEET OF ENTRANCES AS WELL.

>>>> YOU'RE SAYING 1,500 PER YEAR NOW? IN TERMS OF COMPLAINTS?

>>>> PER YEAR NOW, RIGHTS.

>>>> ARE THERE ANY REPEAT OFFENDERS OR JUST THOSE THAT DON'T GET THE MESSAGE?

>>>> I WOULD SAY GENERALLY WE HAVE EXCELLENT COMPLIANCE. MOST PROPRIETORS ARE WILLING TO COMPLY. IT'S JUST A MATTER OF US GOING OUT THERE TALKING WITH THEM, EDUCATING THEM ABOUT THE LAW. THEY'RE MORE THAN HAPPY TO COMPLY IN SOME CASES. THERE ARE SOME PLACES THAT WE HAVE TO WORK WITH A LITTLE BIT LONGER BEFORE WE GET THE COMPLIANCE, BUT IT DOES HAPPEN.

>>>> AND, TED, MY HAT GOES OFF TO THE DEPARTMENT OF HEALTH SERVICES AND ACTUALLY YOUR PREVIOUS GUEST, WILL HUMBLE. WILL WASN'T THE HEAD OF THE DEPARTMENT BUT WHEN THIS LAW WAS PASSED, HE WAS THE ONE THAT WAS IN CHARGE OF HELPING TO WRITE THE LAWS FOR THE IMPLEMENTATION OF SMOKE-FREE ARIZONA. HE REALLY CAME AT FROM THAT PERSPECTIVE. I CREDIT HIM. HE SAYS THIS ISN'T ABOUT FINING PEOPLE OR BUSINESSES, THIS IS JUST ABOUT GETTING PEOPLE TO COMPLY WITH THE LAW. THAT'S OUR OBJECTIVE IS COMPLIANCE. THAT'S BEEN REALLY THEIR APPROACH THIS WHOLE TIME.

>>>> WHAT DO YOU SAY TO THOSE WHO SAY THE RIGHTS OF SMOKERS ARE BEING TRAMPLED HERE? THAT THEY'RE NOT CONVINCED THAT SECONDHAND SMOKE IS DANGEROUS. THEY'RE NOT CONVINCED TOBACCO IS EVEN AT THE ROOT OF PREVENTABLE DISEASES AND THEY'RE SAYING WHY ARE YOU PICKING ON US? WHY ARE YOU -- YOU'RE STILL HEARING THIS, I'M SURE?

>>>> IT'S STILL VERY COMMON. THE REAL BOTTOM SHRINE THE SCIENCE DIDN'T SUPPORT THE STATEMENT. THE SCIENCE IS REALLY VERY CLEAR. NOT ONLY DOES CIGARETTE SMOKING HARM THE SMOKERS BUT IT HARMS THOSE THAT ARE BREATHING IT IN SECONDHAND.

>>>> FOR THOSE WATCHING AND SAY OK, I'VE HAD ENOUGH. I'D LIKE TO QUIT, WHERE DO THEY GO? YOU'VE GOT -- THERE'S A SPECIAL ASH LINE? WHAT'S THAT ALL ABOUT?

>>>> ASH LINE IS WHERE WE REFER CALLERS TO. WE HAVE THE SMOKE-FREE ARIZONA HOTLINE WHERE WE'LL TAKE IN COMPLAINTS OR ANSWER INQUIRIES ABOUT THE LAW BUT WE'LL REFER ANYONE WHO IS INTERESTED ABOUT SMOKING AND CESSATION TO CALL ASH LINE. THERE ARE COACHES THERE THAT WILL HELP PEOPLE QUIT. THEY PROVIDE A LOT OF INFORMATION THAT HELPS THEM TO DO THAT.

>>>> SOMETHING CALLED THE TRUST COMMIT? WHAT'S THAT ALL ABOUT?

>>>> WELL, I NOW CHAIR THE TRUST COMMISSION BUT THE TRUST COMMISSION WAS REALLY PART OF THE ARIZONA TOBACCO TAX THAT WAS SET UP. IT'S REALLY A COMMISSION OF JUST PEOPLE WHO HAVE INTERESTS AND KNOWLEDGE IN THE AREA OF TOBACCO CONTROL AND PREVENTION. THIS JOB IS REALLY ADVISORY. IT'S THE ADVISORY TO WILL HUMBLE ON TOBACCO ISSUES. MEETS EVERY MONTH OR SO AND REFERS TO ISSUES PERTAINING TO TOBACCO.

>>>> THANK YOU FOR BEING HERE. WE APPRECIATE IT.

>>>> THANK YOU SO MUCH.

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