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Advancing racial equity and social justice for Black communities in US tobacco control policy


The US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) applies the Population Health Standard in tobacco product review processes by weighing anticipated health benefits against risks associated with a given commercial tobacco product at the population level. However, systemic racism (ie, discriminatory policies and practices) contributes to an inequitable distribution of tobacco-related health benefits and risks between white and Black/African Americans at the population level. Therefore, Black-centered, antiracist data standards for tobacco product review processes are needed to achieve racial equity and social justice in US tobacco control policy. Regardless of whether FDA implements such data standards, non-industry tobacco scientists should prioritise producing and disseminating Black-centred data relevant to FDA’s regulatory authority. We describe how systemic racism contributes to disparities in tobacco-related outcomes and why these disparities are relevant for population-level risk assessments, then discuss four possible options for Black-centred data standards relevant to tobacco product review processes.

  • advocacy
  • disparities
  • priority/special populations
  • public policy

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