Should Massachusetts Raise Smoking Age? - NECN


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Should Massachusetts Raise Smoking Age?



    Mass. Could Raise Age to Buy Tobacco

    With lawmakers in Massachusetts are considering raising the age to buy tobacco products from 18 to 21, residents are speaking out.

    (Published Friday, April 7, 2017)

    The age to buy tobacco products may be increasing across Massachusetts.

    Lawmakers are closer to increasing the buying age of tobacco products from 18 to 21.

    Many people who spoke with NBC Boston in opposition cited the age to join the military.

    "I think it's stupid," one person said. "If you can die for your country, you should be able to kill yourself with a cigarette."

    The bill, backed by Sen. Jason Lewis and 35 other senators, aims to reduce the number of teens who use tobacco products.

    "Use of tobacco is still the leading preventable cause of illness and premature death in Massachusetts and across the country," said Lewis.

    With more than 140 communities across the state having already made the change, Lewis said its the right decision.

    "We really think it's time now to make tobacco consistently 21 across the state," said Senator Lewis. "Then have it be the same for alcohol, marijuana and tobacco."

    The bill will also increase the age of vaping using e-cigarettes to 21, which is a change the city of Boston has already made.

    The owner of Blue Moon, a smoke shop on Commonwealth Avenue, said that hurt business.

    The bill includes a grandfather clause. Anyone 18 at the time the bill passes will be able to purchase tobacco products.

    Lewis believes the bill will pass this summer and that Gov. Charlie Baker will sign it.

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