News and Events

Bradford County Students Working Against Tobacco Speak at Legislative Delegation
November 18, 2013

Senator Rob Bradley and Representative Charles Van Zant met with residents of Bradford County on November 18, 2013. The legislative delegation hearing was held at the Bradford County Courthouse. Most of the issues discussed were pertaining to health.

Officers of the Bradford Middle School Students Working Against Tobacco (SWAT) Club, President Madison Bennett and Vice-President Bailee Sheppard, spoke to their legislators about their work in Bradford County and provided information on the local Tobacco Prevention Program.

Bradford County Delegation
From L to R: Bailee Sheppard, Senator Rob Bradley, Madison Bennett and Representative Charles Van Zant

Bailee Sheppard spoke first and talked about the goals of the SWAT program. She shared on how the SWAT program in Bradford County works in preventing the initiation of tobacco use among youth and limiting their exposure to second-hand smoke. Sheppard explained that they complete these tasks by educating and advocating changes in policies.

Madison Bennett followed Bailee Sheppard by speaking about how SWAT is empowering youth to work toward a tobacco-free future. The more than 7,000 members of SWAT statewide have a lot to work to complete considering nearly 4,000 kids under the age of 18 try their first cigarette every day and 1,000 become daily smokers.

For the second year in a row, Senator Rob Bradley has introduced legislation designed to reduce youth exposure to secondhand smoke. On November 4, 2013, Senator Bradley filed SB 342 - Florida Clean Indoor Air Act . This bill would alter the preemption clause contained in the Florida Clean Indoor Air Act (F.S. 386.209) to allow counties and municipalities to restrict smoking on specific properties, namely playgrounds used by youth.

For more information on the SWAT Program in Bradford County, contact Jenna Hewett at