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National Awareness

Jun 28

Declare Independence From Holiday Mishaps!

Posted on June 28, 2022 at 3:53 PM by Kiah Weston

The Henry and Stark County Health Departments and First Choice Healthcare Clinics in Kewanee and Colona note that celebrating the Fourth of July should be fun and safe for the entire family.  Unfortunately, consumer fireworks are not only dangerous enough to spoil the fun, they are dangerous enough to take lives.  You can have a great time celebrating Independence Day if you remember to keep your eyes on safety.

To help keep your Fourth of July safe this year, RaeAnn Tucker, Director of Health Promotion with the Health Department, offers these safe suggestions.


You can ensure your children’s safety by supervising their activities and their environment.  Host a Fourth of July party for your kids and their friends.
* Let your guests make decorations.  Kids make cute decorations from crepe paper, construction paper, stickers and glue.  These will provide fun and make the party look festive.  Local craft or hobby shops have the supplies and lots of good ideas. 
* Glo-sticks, glo-ropes and glo-jewelry provide safe and fun ways to brighten an evening.
* Flashlights, plain or with filters made by wrapping the flashlight in colored cellophane, can light the night in fun, safe ways.
* Neon and glow-in-the dark paint can provide both a fun afternoon project and a special evening display.  Kids enjoy watching their art take on a special glow as the sky darkens.
* Novelty flashlights can be extra fun.  You can buy flashlights that have mirrors to bounce the light, and changeable colored filters or optic fibers that look like sparklers but are much safer.
* Instead of attempting a risky fireworks display yourself - take the kids to your local community’s professional fireworks show. 

Part of fireworks’ attraction to children is the big noise that goes with them.  Kids love making noise and there are lots of safe ways for them to do this.
* Step or sit on inflated balloons until they pop.  Or inflate small bags.  Popping the bags makes a nice, loud bang.
* Buy noisemakers from a party store.  Horns, whistles, bells and cymbals will also serve as sound fun. 

Jun 28

June is National Safety Month

Posted on June 28, 2022 at 3:48 PM by Kiah Weston

The Henry and Stark County Health Department announces that this month is National Safety Month.  National Safety Month is celebrated in June when people focus on how they can keep their environment safe and free from dangers.  Lung cancer is the most common cause of cancer death in the United States and worldwide. In fact, lung cancer is responsible for more deaths in this country than the next three most common causes of cancer death combined – colorectal cancer, breast cancer, and pancreatic cancer. 

Smoking is the most common cause of lung cancer. Other risk factors for lung cancer include being exposed to secondhand smoke, having a family history of lung cancer, being treated with radiation therapy to the breast or chest, exposure to asbestos, chromium, nickel, arsenic, soot, or tar in the workplace, and exposure to radon. When smoking is combined with other risk factors, the risk of lung cancer is increased.

Therefore, it’s always important to remind area residents about the Health Departments’ Illinois Tobacco-Free Communities Grant activities.  

In both Henry and Stark County our staff works continually to enforce, educate and encourage compliance with the Illinois Smoke-Free Act. The Smoke-free Illinois Act prohibits smoking in virtually all public places and workplaces, including offices, theaters, museums, libraries, educational institutions, schools, commercial establishments, enclosed shopping centers and retail stores, restaurants, bars, private clubs and gaming facilities.

The Smoke Free Illinois Act requires that all business owners:
*Do not permit smoking within 15 feet of entrances, exits, windows, that open and ventilation intakes.
 *Post “No Smoking” signs at each entrance
*Remove ashtrays from areas where smoking is prohibited.

The Health Department notes that failure to comply with the Smoke Free Illinois Act can result in fines.

Health Department officials note, “The Health Department in coordination with the State of Illinois has taken these important steps to protect its residents, workers and visitors from the harmful and hazardous effects of smoking and secondhand smoke.”  

Cigarette smoking is responsible for more than 480,000 deaths per year in the United States, including more than 41,000 deaths resulting from secondhand smoke exposure. This is about one in five deaths annually, or 1,300 deaths every day.

Jun 16

Fireworks Safety Month

Posted on June 16, 2022 at 3:31 PM by Kiah Weston

The Henry and Stark County Health Departments' staff notes it's that time of year again - a time for Fourth of July picnics and Independence Day celebrations.  In accordance with June's designation as Fireworks Safety Month, the Department offers the following facts on fireworks safety.

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