Reduce youth vaping with these two good bills!

Ask your state House rep to pass HB 58 and HB 118 to reduce youth use of e-cigarettes and flavored tobacco!

For years there has been substantial effort to prevent and reduce tobacco use. Despite the success of the reduction in cigarette use, e-cigarette and flavored tobacco product use by youth and adults has dramatically increased, posing another public health risk. According to the FDA, youth and young adults cited flavors as a main reason for e-cigarette use.

Two good bills seek to curb youth e-cigarette and flavored tobacco use by providing mechanisms that educate kids and prevent use in school (HB 58) and that implement stricter regulation of sales to keep harmful products out of the hands of youth (HB 118).

Simply click “Start Writing” to ask legislators to vote YES on HB 58 and HB 118.

What would HB 58 Electronic Cigarettes in Schools Amendments do?

Requires local school boards to adopt discipline policies to address possession and use of electronic cigarette products on school grounds, adds a school-based prevention program for students in grade 4 or 5, requires schools to create a plan to address the causes of student use of tobacco, alcohol, electronic cigarette products and controlled substances and creates a stipend for a specialist to administer the plan.

What would HB 118 Retail Tobacco Specialty Business Amendments do?

HB 118 defines flavored tobacco products and requires retailers that sell flavored tobacco products to obtain a specific permit, allowing for increased regulations that these establishments are required to follow to restrict youth access to flavored tobacco products. The bill also clarifies that a retail tobacco specialty business will include any commercial establishment where flavored tobacco products are sold.

(Remember to personalize your comments for the greatest impact! Why do YOU support this proposal?)

  • HB 58 seeks to address the usage of alcohol, tobacco, electronic cigarette products and other substances among youth by directing schools to provide education, prevention programs and discipline policies.
  • Schools, students and parents have been seeking tools and strategies to reduce epidemic youth use of e-cigarette products and prevent harmful health impacts as well as the use of other harmful tobacco products that can ensue. HB 58 gives schools a pathway at last for addressing the rising use of e-cigarettes among students through a combination of prevention education, promotion of positive behaviors and discipline policies.
  • HB 58 directs schools to adopt policies that prohibit students from possessing or using e-cigarette products on school property as well as create procedures for confiscation and disposal, destruction or release of products to local law enforcement if there is reasonable suspicion the product contains an illegal substance and its release is requested for the purpose of investigation or action by law enforcement.
  • HB 58 involves parents in decision making through community councils.
  • HB 58 also directs the state school board to establish a library of documented best practices for cessation interventions to help create successful policies in Utah schools.
  • HB 118 effectively requires that flavored tobacco only be sold in tobacco specialty stores that require identification for entrance, much like a bar, in order to reduce illegal youth access to flavored tobacco products to protect youth, families, and communities in Utah from the harmful effects of tobacco addiction.
  • Flavored tobacco products are appealing to youth with colorful packaging, fun shapes and appealing flavors.
  • Enforcement of age restrictions for flavored tobacco purchases at non-specialty retail stores that sell these products has proven to be largely impossible, which is why 74% of flavored tobacco sales to youth occur in stores that are more pervasive and that have fewer regulations.
  • Reducing youth access to tobacco prevents future adult useAdult tobacco users that reported the first tobacco product they used being flavored had a 32% percent higher prevalence of current tobacco product use.
  • Among youth, those who used flavored tobacco as their first product were 13% more likely to currently use tobacco. Further, 81% of youth and 86% of young adults who have ever used tobacco reported their first use being a flavored tobacco product.
  • Statistics indicate that product restriction policy compliance is strong among tobacco retailers and these policies significantly reduce flavored product availability. Decreased availability to flavored tobacco products will reduce youth exposure, access, and use.
  • Smokeless and chewing tobacco is harmful to the health of users. Research indicates it leads to mouth and oral cancer. In addition, juvenile use of smokeless tobacco is increasing, and use of electronic cigarettes may lead to use of tobacco products. Therefore, it is in the best interest of citizens’ health to more thoroughly define the products and control and monitor their distribution.

How to make sure your letter is successful:

  1. Use a clear and specific subject heading.
  2. Start with a salutation (“Dear …”).
  3. Be CIVIL, PERSONAL and as CONCISE as possible.
  4. Mention that you are a CONSTITUENT and include your full address with zip code.
  5. Sign your name at the end.

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