BOSTON (CBS) — Boston Mayor Marty Walsh proposed changes to the city’s tobacco regulations Wednesday that would raise the minimum age for buying tobacco and nicotine products to 21.
“It is our responsibility to do what we can to guide our young people and create a healthier future for all Bostonians,” said Walsh in a release Wednesday. “We know the consequences of tobacco use are real and can be devastating. These proposed changes send a strong message that Boston takes the issue of preventing tobacco addiction seriously, and I hope that message is heard throughout Boston and across the entire country.”
The proposed regulations would also ensure that e-cigarettes are included in restrictions banning the sale of tobacco products in pharmacies and educational institutions. They would also raise the age of admission to adult-only retail tobacco stores and smoking bars to 21, and ban the sale of flavored tobacco products anywhere but those stores.
“Prohibiting tobacco sales to those under 21 and restricting availability of flavored tobacco products sends a clear message to all community members that our kids’ health is not for sale,” said Tami Gouveia, Executive Director of Tobacco Free Mass. “We care about protecting our kids from a lifetime of tobacco and nicotine addiction and these policies will do just that.”
Earlier this year, Walsh moved to ban tobacco products at Fenway Park. That ban will go into effect next April.
A public hearing on the new regulations will be held on December 3, and written comments will be accepted until December 9. The Board of Health will vote on the regulations December 17. If approved, they will go into effect 60 days later.