On Tuesday, Sept. 4, at 10 a.m., the Essex County Board of Supervisors will vote on Tobacco 21, a measure that would raise the minimum legal sales age for tobacco products to 21. If you live in Essex County, would you contact your legislator and ask them to pass this measure? We’ve provided a letter you can adapt, as well as a link that will give you contact info to YOUR supervisor. Tobacco 21 will protect our youth from the ravages of smoking!

Here’s the link – 

http://www.co.essex.ny.us/downloads/supervisorlist.pdf

Here’s the letter – 

Dear Town Supervisor,

As a resident of Essex County, and your constituent, I am very pleased to see that the Board of Supervisors is considering Tobacco 21. This common-sense legislation will protect the health of our young adults by raising the legal sales age of tobacco products to 21.

With all the misinformation out there about electronic cigarettes and, specifically, JUUL’s, it’s important to remember that science is on our side. An Institute of Medicine report shows that by increasing the sales age of tobacco products to 21, there will be a 12% reduction in the smoking rate. This means future generations have the potential to be smoke free. With tobacco use remaining the leading preventable cause of heart disease and stroke, the nation’s number one and number five causes of mortality, any measure that can help tobacco addiction is critical.

By passing this law once and for all, we are keeping youth from ever picking up their first tobacco product and we are eliminating the main source of tobacco products for this age group, their friends. After all, a sixteen-year-old is far more likely to know an eighteen-year-old than a twenty-one-year-old.  And, if a person makes it to 21 without ever smoking, the chances of them ever doing so drops to only 2%. This is extremely important given that 95% of smokers report starting before they turned 21.

With 19 municipalities in New York, Albany, Onondaga and Cortland Counties, having passed Tobacco 21, I am eager to see the same health protection extended to our residents.

With over $10 Billion dollars spent annually on health expenditures from tobacco related diseases, this legislation saves lives and money. Please support Tobacco 21 at the upcoming vote on Tuesday, September 4th.

Thank you!