About STOP

It's time to shine the light on the tobacco industry.

STOP is a partnership among the Tobacco Control Research Group at the University of Bath, the Global Center for Good Governance in Tobacco Control, the International Union Against Tuberculosis and Lung Disease and Vital Strategies, with US $20 million in funding to launch the partnership from Bloomberg Philanthropies.

Learn about the partners

Bloomberg Philanthropies logo

Bloomberg Philanthropies invests in 510 cities and 129 countries around the world to ensure better, longer lives for the greatest number of people. The organization focuses on five key areas for creating lasting change: arts, education, environment, government Innovation, and public health. Bloomberg Philanthropies encompasses all of Michael R. Bloomberg’s giving, including his foundation and personal philanthropy as well as Bloomberg Associates, a pro bono consultancy that works in cities around the world. In 2018, Bloomberg Philanthropies distributed $767 million.

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Global Center for Good Governance in Tobacco Control logo

The Global Centre for Good Governance in Tobacco Control (GGTC) of the School of Global Studies at the Thammasat University is a global resource hub on tobacco industry interference that is providing relevant strategies and tools to 181 Parties of the WHO Framework Convention on Tobacco Control through the WHO FCTC Secretariat’s Knowledge Hub on Article 5.3. It is a joint initiative of the Thammasat University’s School of Global Studies and South-East Asia Tobacco Control Alliance (SEATCA) to solve the single greatest obstacle to tobacco control implementation—tobacco industry interference.

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The Union logo

The Union is a global scientific organisation with the mission to improve health among people living in poverty. For close to 100 years, The Union has been a leader in the fight against some of the world’s biggest killers, including tuberculosis, lung diseases and tobacco use. Since 2007, The Union has co-led the Bloomberg Initiative to Reduce Tobacco Use grants program, working with partners in low- and middle-income countries to support implementation of evidence-based policy change.

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University of Bath logo

The Tobacco Control Research Group (TCRG) at the University of Bath (UK) is an internationally renowned team of academics and professionals led by Professor Anna Gilmore. Recognized globally for its work on the tobacco industry, it is at the forefront of the emerging field of commercial determinants of health and home to TobaccoTactics. Drawn from many disciplines, the team researches and analyzes tobacco-industry behavior using diverse methodologies, from big data to investigative research. The impact of the team’s work has been recognized globally with awards including the Public Health Advocacy Institute Award and the WHO World No Tobacco Day Award.

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Vital Strategies logo

Vital Strategies is a global health organization that believes every person should be protected by a strong public health system. We work with governments and civil society in 73 countries to design and implement evidence-based strategies that tackle their most pressing public health problems. Our goal is to see governments adopt promising interventions at scale as rapidly as possible.

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WATCH: In 60 seconds, Michael Bloomberg tells the story of why he created a global watchdog organization to hold the tobacco industry accountable and expose the truth.

A Multi-Front, Global Approach to Tobacco Control

About

STOP is dedicated to rigorously exposing the tobacco industry’s efforts to derail tobacco control and hook a new generation of users. We work around the world, with a special focus on low-and middle-income countries where the industry is aggressively targeting communities and where the biggest populations are at risk for tobacco-related disease burden.

Motivation

At least 8 million people die every year from using tobacco products. Millions more live every day with the health and economic consequences of tobacco use. The main barrier to reducing this preventable death and suffering is a deep-pocketed industry driven by profit.

The tobacco industry uses those deep pockets to deceive the public, target children, exploit marginalized communities and interfere in sovereign political processes. It works tirelessly to derail life-saving policies that threaten those profits. And as it continues to sell hundreds of billions of cigarettes, it has the audacity to claim it wants to help smokers quit.

It is clear that the tobacco industry is no friend of public health. This principle, that the interests of the tobacco industry and public health are incompatible, is enshrined in the world’s first global health treaty, the Framework Convention on Tobacco Control.

The tobacco industry is global, its well-documented tactics are evolving and an ever-expanding product portfolio may contain new risks that science has not yet uncovered. The epidemic of tobacco-related disease, however, persists because of the tobacco industry and needs to be countered at every level.

Experience

STOP partners bring decades of experience from the public, private and non-governmental sectors. We are researchers, investigative journalists, epidemiologists, former civil servants, advocates, storytellers and more. Our interdisciplinary skill set strengthens our capabilities in industry monitoring, research, policy, advocacy and strategic communication.

Approach

STOP’s primary work is to understand and expose tobacco industry behavior, and to arm and support stakeholders with evidence and tools to counter the industry.

We do this by:

  • Providing a platform for advocates, policy makers and journalists to access the latest information on the tobacco industry—including exposés on abuses and tactics, analyses on industry behavior and new tools to fight industry interference
  • Collecting data and investing in comprehensive research
  • Responding to requests for help through our rapid response service
  • Exposing and challenging the industry’s dishonest strategies by engaging with local and international media
  • Collaborating across the tobacco control network and other sectors to ensure a comprehensive approach to countering industry tactics

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