I Support Tobacco 21!
Dear [Decision Maker],
As an Ontario County resident, I urge you to vote YES on Tobacco 21 legislation.Tobacco 21 is a promising strategy to help reduce smoking rates. Why raise the age for the sale of tobacco products? Consider these facts: the use of tobacco products is the nation's number one cause of preventable death. Ninety-six percent of adults who smoke started this deadly addiction before the age of 21.
In addition to the health toll tobacco takes on residents, the financial burden is tremendous. Every year tobacco-related heath care costs New Yorkers $10.4 billion, with state and local medicaid costs totaling $3.3 billion.Recent evidence shows raising the legal age for the sale of tobacco products to 21 can put a serious dent in smoking rates. A March 2015 report by the Institute of Medicine (IOM), The Public Health Implications of Raising the Minimum Age of Legal Access to Tobacco Products, reviewed existing literature on tobacco use initiation, developmental biology and psychology, and tobacco policy. The IOM report predicts that raising the national minimum age for the sale of tobacco products to 21 will likely lead to a 12 percent reduction in smoking prevalence.
Raising the age of sale for tobacco products would be an important step forward in the fight against cancer - one that 14 counties in the state, plus New York City, have already taken. In fact, about 75% of state residents live in area with a Tobacco 21 law. Don't the youth in Ontario County deserve the same protection from Big Tobacco?
Please vote YES on Tobacco21![Your Name] [Your Address] [City, State ZIP]