Background: The Detroit Youth Tobacco Survey (DYTS) provided representative data from middle school students, 84.7% of whom were African-American/Black, on self-reported prevalence of tobacco use and awareness, smoking cessation, peer and family influence, environmental tobacco smoke, media exposure and access to tobacco. Results: Over half of the students (53.0%; +/-4.1) used some form of tobacco at least once, with the majority trying cigarettes (47.5%; +/-3.9) and about a quarter (23.1%; +/-3.5) trying cigars. Ten percent (10.2%; +/-2.3) tried bidis or kreteks, and 7.4% (+/-1.4) tried smokeless tobacco. Of middle school students who smoked, nearly one out of four (23.2%; +/-3.1) had their first cigarette before age eleven. Smokers were more likely to have parents who smoked. The majority of middle school students who smoked would like to quit. A third had practiced ways to say “no” to tobacco at school and a quarter had participated in a community event discouraging them from using tobacco. Conclusion: Additional consideration should be given to innovative strategies for middle school students for smoking prevention, reduction of tobacco use and minimizing exposure to environmental tobacco smoke.

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