Flavored Tobacco Ban Proposed by Chatham Board of Health

CHATHAM – A public hearing has been scheduled next month by the Chatham Board of Health to discuss a proposal to ban the sale of flavored tobacco and electronic cigarette products in the town.

Students at Monomoy Regional High School originally brought the proposal before the board.

According to the Director of the Barnstable County Tobacco Control Program Bob Collett, 95-percent of the investment made by tobacco companies is directed at children ages 14 and younger.

“Within industry documents, they refer to these 14-year-olds as ‘replacement smokers,’” said Collett.

“No regard for what the eventual negative outcome would be for the people they’re targeting and addicting at a very young age to these products, knowing it only takes two weeks to addict someone who using nicotine, in any form. Then, they have a customer for an average of 20 years.”

People of all ages have relatively easy access to vaping products, which are available for purchase at liquor and convenience stores, as well as online. The products are available in over 8,000 flavors.

Collett says the goal is to limit the marketing and sale of these products to adult-only establishments.

“The flavored products can only be sold in adult-only establishments, so a tobacconist or a vape shop where you’re required to be 21 to enter the store.”

“The idea is to reduce the visibility and the constant bombardment of those images and the products on young people. The industry spends billions of dollars each year targeting, specifically, 14-year-olds.”

The public hearing is scheduled for June 17.

The board will review the draft regulation on June 10.

By TIM DUNN, CapeCod.com News Center 

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