Big Tobacco continues to blow smoke, blatantly lie, and flood the media with catchy phrases and misleading information with the goal of addicting another generation on nicotine dependence and securing their next generation of profits. The tobacco companies oppose Prop 31 because they know it will prevent kids from smoking.
Here’s a few key points to remember when talking about Prop 31 with your friends and family.
Prop 31 will save millions in health care costs.
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention estimate that in California, tobacco use costs approximately $13.3 billion in health care costs each year, including $3.6 billion in Medi-Cal expenditure. Ending the sale of candy flavored tobacco would result in more than $800 million in annual health care cost savings.
Prop 31 will not hurt California’s economy or hurt convenience stores or other small businesses.
Ending the sale of flavored tobacco will boost California’s economy, improve workplace productivity, and reduce health care costs.
Additionally, studies show nationally that convenience stores and gas stations generate most of their profit from foodservice, not tobacco sales. A 2015 report found that 49% of customers go to convenience stores to purchase a drink, 35% to purchase food and about 17% for other services like accessing an ATM, using the bathroom, or buying tobacco. Ending the sale of flavored tobacco will not reduce number of customers to convenience stores and will not reduce overall profit.
Yes on Prop 31 will not increase racial profiling.
These concerns are old talking points generated by the tobacco industry and could not be further from the truth. The facts are that the adoption of menthol restrictions will not lead to police having any greater interaction with any youth. The bill will not prohibit the possession of these products rather, it will prohibit retailers from being able to sell them to our kids. When similar ordinances were passed in Oakland and San Francisco, the Police Chiefs stood with public health groups and confirmed that these ordinances would not result in targeting of communities of color.
Most importantly, Prop 31 will protect children from deadly tobacco addiction.
We truly have a historic opportunity this November to save a generation of youth from dealing with the tolls of tobacco use! Vote Yes on 31 and spread the truth!