Even in these ever-changing times, the American Heart Association's focus on life-saving policy work is un-wavering. In Oregon, our focus remains on tobacco control, access to healthy foods and protecting our Medicaid program. We need your help to support our work.
This November on the ballot, all Oregonians will have a historic opportunity to make an investment in the health of future generations and to protect essential health care access for those in our communities most in need, by increasing the tax on nicotine products in the our state.
Increasing tobacco taxes, which are passed along to consumers in the form of higher prices, is one of the most effective ways to prevent and reduce tobacco use. Higher prices encourage tobacco users to quit and stay quit and helps prevent youth from starting a deadly habit.
Oregon has not had a significant increase in our cigarette tax in nearly two decades, and currently we do not tax alarmingly popular e-cigarette products. The ballot referral in November aims to change that. This campaign is just beginning but we are asking you today to pledge to stand with the American Heart Association this fall!
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What exactly does the tobacco ballot referral do?
- It increases the per pack tax by $2 (putting our state tax in parity with neighboring states Washington and California)
- It creates the first tax on e-cigarette products at 65% wholesale
- It doubles the states investment in tobacco prevention and education programs specifically for communities most targeted by industry
- It dedicates funding to provide coverage for the Oregon Health Plan (Medicaid)
Today, we are asking you to join our fight. Let us know you plan to VOTE YES in November on this important issue! We will keep you up to date on the campaign, including opportunities to be involved with the campaign as things move forward.