NEW YORK – Anti-tobacco activists are rejoicing over new laws passed in the state budget that they say will prevent harm to young adults.
Flavored electronic cigarettes are now banned in New York State, and tobacco products are being taken off the shelves at pharmacies in the state.
Governor Cuomo has been seeking to ban flavored vapes since a rash of vaping related illnesses received wide publicity last Fall.
However, a judge threw out Cuomo’s original executive order saying he didn’t have the authority to unilaterally ban them.
So, groups like Tobacco Free Broome and Tioga began lobbying state lawmakers to prohibit the flavored e-cigarettes, arguing that the sweet flavors enticed children to get hooked on nicotine.
Broome County Health Department Public Health Educator Beth Smalt says in order to stop addiction, you must start working with younger age groups.
“This is a huge step towards helping New Yorkers live free from addiction, and also the end of the flavored e-cigarette product and the sale of tobacco products in pharmacies may prompt New Yorkers to stop smoking and vaping,” says Smalt.
Tobacco Free Broome and Tioga says the average age of a new smoker in New York is only 13 years old, and 90% of smokers say they started by the age of 18.
Almost 36% of Broome County High School Seniors use e-cigarettes and vaping products.
Broome residents who want to quit their nicotine addiction can call 778-2885.