Age to buy tobacco and e-cigarette products in New York raised to 21

As of Wednesday, anyone looking to purchase tobacco and e-cigarette products in New York must be 21 years old.Gov. Andrew Cuomo this summer signed the...

Posted: Nov 14, 2019 10:05 AM

As of Wednesday, anyone looking to purchase tobacco and e-cigarette products in New York must be 21 years old.

Gov. Andrew Cuomo this summer signed the legislation in a bid to combat health threats stemming from the use of these products.

New York State Police is partnering with the Department of Health to conduct undercover investigations on retailers selling vaping products to underage youth, according to a press release.

"The goal of this law is simple: to prevent cigarettes and vaping products from getting into the hands of our youth, creating an addiction to a deadly habit," Cuomo said in a statement earlier this month. "We are taking aggressive action to make sure the decades of progress we've made to combat tobacco addiction is not undone by a sharp rise in e-cigarette use among younger New Yorkers."

According to New York Department of Health data, nearly 27% of high school students in the state are now using e-cigarettes. In September, New York became the first US state to ban the sale of flavored e-cigarettes and nicotine e-liquids to combat the increase in young people using vape products.

New York is the 18th state to raise the age to buy tobacco and e-cigarette products to 21, according to the Preventing Tobacco Addiction Foundation, an advocacy group. Other states to pass this legislation include Hawaii, California, New Jersey, Oregon, Maine, Massachusetts, Virginia, Illinois, Delaware, Arkansas, Washington, Maryland, Utah, Vermont, Texas, Connecticut and Ohio.

Several states have considered new ways to limit e-cigarette sales after a nationwide outbreak of vaping-related lung injury. As of November 5, there have been 2,051 cases of vaping-associated illnesses, and states have reported at least 40 deaths. The first vaping-related death in New York, a 17-year-old boy from the Bronx, was reported in October.

Last week, the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention reported that vitamin E acetate, an additive sometimes used in THC and other vaping products, may be to blame for the outbreak of e-cigarette-related lung injuries. The CDC is continuing to test for a wide range of chemicals.

"This does not rule out other possible ingredients," said Dr. Anne Schuchat, the principal deputy director of the CDC said last week. "There may be more than one cause."

New York Coronavirus Cases

County data is updated nightly.

Confirmed Cases: 419642

Reported Deaths: 32760
CountyConfirmedDeaths
New York City22725823567
Suffolk436811998
Nassau435802194
Westchester361361447
Rockland13925674
Orange11129491
Erie8791671
Monroe4901285
Dutchess4589153
Onondaga3556200
Albany2573128
Oneida2129115
Ulster204991
Niagara149198
Sullivan148848
Putnam144663
Broome111569
Schenectady105537
Rensselaer75930
Saratoga75217
Columbia53537
Madison41217
Ontario35734
Warren30733
Orleans29754
Steuben29742
Fulton29324
Greene29118
Genesee2775
Herkimer2704
St. Lawrence2634
Washington25614
Oswego2513
Chautauqua2499
Wayne2493
Tompkins2330
Chenango2156
Tioga19325
Livingston1748
Montgomery1704
Chemung1683
Cattaraugus1646
Cayuga1512
Jefferson1400
Clinton1274
Otsego1165
Wyoming1165
Delaware1044
Cortland950
Seneca873
Allegany791
Schoharie690
Yates567
Essex550
Franklin540
Lewis390
Schuyler220
Hamilton80
Unassigned00
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