In a new Public Health Proposal, Mayor Bloomberg proposed to raise the age at which individuals can purchase cigarettes in the New York City to 21 years old, up from 18. According to the NY Daily News:
Officials cite data showing that 80% of smokers in the city started before age 21 — and a study that found raising the legal age to 21 could cut smoking rates among 18-to-20-year-olds by more than half.
“If we can prevent our youth from starting smoking before they’re 21, we may just be able to protect an entire generation from a lifetime of being addicted to the world’s most dangerous drug,” Farley said.
Spearheaded by Christine Quinn, the City Counsel Speaker, and Dr. Thomas Farley, the City’s Health Commissioner. The legislation, if passed, would leave NYC with the highest minimum age to purchase cigarettes in the nation. Many seem to believe the bill is seemingly “an attack on the maturity and self-determination of young people”, and is in essences useless. After all, youth find ways to get alcohol so why wouldn’t they find ways to get cigarettes?
Written By Georgianna Dolan-Reilly, LMSW
SJS Staff Writer
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