A move to raise the Smoking Age

The New York State is one step closer to raising the smoking age from 18 to 21.

Posted: Mar 7, 2019 6:00 PM

New York lawmakers are trying to raise the smoking age from 18 to 21. A bill that included e-cigarettes has passed the Assembly, but Flawless Vapor Owner Nicholas Delano doesn’t think the law will stop kids determined to get their hands on these products.

"I see it day in and day out. You know these youth even coming in trying to purchase stuff from me with devices already in their hand, so they’re getting it somewhere, and my assumption is they’re not getting it by legal means. So I don’t think raising the age is definitely going to you know curb that."

Oneida County Health Director Phyllis Ellis agrees the law will likely not stop everyone, but it’s a step in the right direction.

"When they changed the drinking age from 18 to 21, you know the 18 year olds were still going to try to have a drink, but as I said before, I think if it’s 21, your young adults in school still are going to have a harder time to access the products because they’re not hanging out with the guy that just turned 18 and he can go buy it for you."

Delano believes vaping is also a healthier alternative to traditional cigarette smoking.

"I just know from a personal standpoint I feel better, you know I smell better, I taste better, so I mean its worked for me and its worked for a lot of people that I see coming into this store, and to kind of take that away would definitely be detrimental."

The Health Department has a different stance.

"You know to say one’s better than the other, I think they’re both dangerous, and they’re both focused on chronic illness and injury to young adults and adults, you know older adults as well. So I think this is one step in how do we curtail that next generation from becoming chronically ill."

Delano tells us the law would have an impact on his business, but still stands by the thought of keeping our youth away from tobacco products.

"Anything to get younger people… you know to deter them from picking up tobacco in the first place is fine by me."

The proposed legislation still has to pass the Senate, and then be signed by the Governor before becoming law.

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