SC Department of Social Services Achieves Gold Star Award for Implementing Tobacco-Free Best Practices

COLUMBIA, S.C. – The SC Department of Social Services (DSS) was recognized by the South Carolina Hospital Association’s (SCHA) Working Well initiative and Prevention Partners for achieving the highest standard of tobacco-free excellence by creating a tobacco-free workplace and providing high-quality tobacco cessation programs for employees. Organizations are awarded with Prevention Partners’ Gold Star for this achievement. In order to receive this recognition, DSS has a tobacco-free worksite policy, refers its employees to effective quit programs and counseling, provides comprehensive cessation benefits (nicotine replacement therapy and prescription medications), and offers incentives to encourage employees to quit tobacco. These are among several evidence-based components recommended by Working Well and Prevention Partners for comprehensive quit-tobacco systems at worksites. 


“DSS sets a high bar in terms of their cessation program for employees. Employees are provided every opportunity to be successful in quitting the use of tobacco, and all employees are protected from exposure to secondhand smoke at the workplace,” said Lindsey Bickers Bock, Strategic Coaching Senior Manager at Prevention Partners. “I applaud their great effort.”


“DSS is proud to receive this award and appreciates the partnership we have with Working Well and the Duke Endowment,” said Barbara Derrick, Deputy State Director of Administration. “DSS has had great success with our tobacco-free campus efforts state-wide. This initiative has had a positive effect on our work environment by improving employee health, cutting absenteeism, and improving morale. Thank you for recognizing the efforts of our Wellness Committee and Human Resources Office.”


Prevention Partners works with the SC Hospital Association’s Working Well Initiative to engage corporate leaders and staff throughout South Carolina to enhance and sustain employee wellness efforts. These efforts are generously funded through the Duke Endowment.  


About DSS:

The mission of the South Carolina Department of Social Services is to serve South Carolina by promoting the safety, permanency, and well-being of children and vulnerable adults, helping individuals achieve stability and strengthening families.


About Working Well:

Working Well is a statewide strategy to improve workplace wellness policies, systems and environments around tobacco cessation, healthy nutrition and increased physical activity so the healthy choice is the easy choice for employees across South Carolina.


About Prevention Partners: 

The nonprofit Prevention Partners builds healthier communities through a suite of products that guide schools, workplaces, hospitals and clinics to address the leading causes of preventable disease: tobacco use, poor nutrition, physical inactivity and obesity.




Lisa Watts | 336.501.8579 |



Emily O’Sullivan | 803.454.6969 |



Karen Luchka Wingo| 803.898.8030 |

08-30-2016 01:43 (EDT)