Monday marked the culmination of a bipartisan campaign that was decades in the making. When President Obama signed the Family Smoking Prevention and Tobacco Control Act
, he completed the work of those who have fought for years to expose the dangers of smoking and to protect children from its harmful effects. The President was joined by many members of Congress and health care and consumer advocates who have struggled for this legislation for many years.
Some of the greatest intended beneficiaries of the Family Smoking Prevention and Tobacco Control Act joined the President on stage: Eamon McGoldrick, Hoai-Nam Ngoc Bui, and Christopher and Sarah Wiggins are some of the countless children who will benefit from the greater protections that were signed into law on Monday.
Christopher and Sarah Wiggins are also the grandchildren of Judy Wilkenfeld, who fought for years to secure better tobacco control. Wilkenfeld served as lead attorney for the Federal Trade Commission in the case of In the Matter of R.J Reynolds Tobacco Company in 1990, which was the first government case that challenged tobacco advertisements that wrongfully disputed the health risks of smoking. Though she spent a lifetime fighting this issue, she passed away before the bill was signed into law, thus making it truly fitting that her grandchildren were present to witness the President signing a law that many fought so hard to achieve.
(From Left to Right: Representative Henry Waxman, Representative Donna Christensen, Representative John Dingell, Representative Todd Platts, Representative Frank Pallone, Sarah Wiggins, Christopher Wiggins, Eamon McGoldrick, and Hoai-Nam Ngoc Bui. Photo credit: Trenton Arthur.)