Washington state age restrictions for tobacco products have been set at 18 years of age, for both “analogue” and electronic cigarettes. Yet, a new law proposal aims to set the bar higher, at 21 years of age.
To achieve this, the Washington County Health Department are currently debating the adoption of the tobacco 21 ordinance. This regulatory measure aims to curb consumption of nicotine, in particular among younger populations. If the law is ratified, vaping products will also be concerned.
Valid reasons to adopt the tobacco 21 ordinance
The organisation ran a public consultation campaign to help raise awareness of this issue among Americans nationwide. They established a list of all the advantages of raising the age restriction to 21 for those wishing to purchase and consume tobacco products.
Studies have shown that 95% of smokers tried their first cigarette before the age of 21 (Surgeon General, 2015). In the same vein, the 18-20 age range represents 90% of tobacco vendor customers (Difranza, 2011). According to research organised by Surgeon General, tobacco can wreak havoc on the developing brains of people under 21. The campaign also quoted the statistic that 15.1% of secondary students in Ohio agreed that smoking, and vaping, were on the rise.
The San Fransisco electorate proved they were favourable to banning flavourings in e-liquids, and the American FDA is maintaining its campaigns to raise awareness of the dangers of vaping for younger populations. So it appears the current law proposal is framed in a public health initiative that would ban the sale and consumption of e-cigs for under-21s.