Let's hear from you! Why do you need Tobacco 21?
As we get closer to the first day of the Legislative Session on January 3, it is time to start thinking about how we can engage with our communities and elected officials in order to achieve our policy goals. Raising the legal sale age of tobacco products, referred to as Tobacco 21, is still at the top of the American Heart Association's list. With the smoking rate in New York State still at 16.6% and 10,600 teenagers under 18 years old becoming daily smokers each year, fighting for Tobacco 21 is common sense.
In between last session and now, communities all across the State have been bringing the Tobacco 21 fight to their local county legislators. Most recently, Onondaga County sent a Tobacco 21 bill to their County Executive to sign!
Even with all of the local support, a big push is needed to convince our Senators and Assemblymembers that 18 years old is not old enough to consent to a life of addiction. This is where we can use your help. In order to show that it is young adults who are harmed the most by not raising the sale age, we want the elected officials to hear from the youths themselves. If you, your kids, or anyone you know is interested in sharing their story about why they need Tobacco 21 please have them reach out to me at Caitlin.Obrien@heart.org. From there we will take the participants to meet with their Senator or Assemblymember and share their story.
Thank you for helping us make New York a healthier place to live. I'm looking forward to working with you all during 2018.