Massachusetts Debates Proposal to Curb Youth Smoking

BOSTON (AP) — A proposal before state lawmakers would set at 21 the minimum age for purchasing cigarettes and other tobacco or vaping products across all of Massachusetts.

The bill scheduled for House debate on Wednesday also bans vaping on school grounds and other public places, and would prohibit pharmacies and stores located within health care facilities from selling tobacco.

Nearly two-thirds of all cities and towns in Massachusetts already have local ordinances that prohibit the sale of tobacco products to anyone under the age of 21. If the statewide standard was adopted, Massachusetts would join California, Hawaii, Maine, New Jersey and Oregon with Tobacco 21 laws.

If passed by the House and the Senate, the law would take effect Jan. 1. It would not apply to anyone turning 18 before that date.

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