ROCHESTER, N.Y. (WROC) — Newly required tobacco industry corrective statements will begin appearing in most tobacco stores throughout the New York State this summer, and must be in place for 21 months, says the New York State Department of Health.

These new statements, which must be in highly visible spots within the stores, are designed to be eye-catching and provide accurate information describing the health effects and addictiveness of smoking.

These changes come after last year’s resolution of the civil racketeering lawsuit against the most prominent U.S. cigarette companies. The order went into effect on July 1, and stores will have three months to post the required corrective statements.

The new corrective statements include the following:

“People can handle the truth. People deserve the truth. The court-ordered corrective statements appearing at retailers are long overdue and will support our mission to reduce smoking-related illness such as cancer and heart disease,” State Health Commissioner Dr. James McDonald said.

The tobacco companies fought these point-of-sale corrective action statements in court for 16 years.

The lawsuit was initially filed in 1999 in the U.S. District Court for the District of Columbia. In 2006, the court found that the cigarette companies had violated civil racketeering laws and defrauded consumers about the health dangers of cigarette smoking along with marketing to children, according to the Department of Health.

In 2017, corrective statements appeared in newspaper advertisements, television spots, and more. In May 2022, an agreement was reached that would make these corrective statements be displayed in retail stores.

The order applies to Altria, Philip Morris USA Inc., and R.J. Reynolds Tobacco Company, as well as to four cigarette brands owned by ITG Brands LLC. Philip Morris USA Inc. has been considered the leading cigarette manufacturer in the U.S. for more than 40 years and is best known for its Marlboro cigarettes.

NYS quitting resources

For help with quitting, including counseling and medication, the NYS Department of Health advises you to talk to your healthcare provider.

For information on how to quit smoking or vaping tobacco or nicotine, the New York State Smokers’ Quitline provides free and confidential services that include information, tools, quit coaching, and support in both English and Spanish.

Services are available by calling 1-866-NY-QUITS (1-866-697-8487), texting (716) 309-4688, or visiting for information, to chat online with a Quit Coach, or to sign up for Learn2QuitNY, a six-week, step-by-step text messaging program to build the skills you need to quit any tobacco product. 

Individuals aged 13 to 24 can text “DropTheVape” to 88709 to receive age-appropriate quit assistance. The Department of Health says they will continue to provide free quitting and cessation support for youth and young adults to receive anonymous and confidential texting services.