SPRINGFIELD — On Tuesday, Senator Eric P. Lesser praised the efforts of Springfield’s young people in urging the city to raise the age of tobacco sales, saying “advocacy like this makes a difference.”
On Monday night, the Springfield City Council unanimously approved a city ordinance that will ban the sale of tobacco products to people under age 21 after months of lobbying by health advocates and many young activists from the city.
In October, Sen. Lesser met with students from the Mason Square Health Task Force who had come to the State House to advocate for raising the age of tobacco sales.
“For anyone doubting their ability to make a difference, take a look at these young people who raised awareness and got the word out about youth smoking. Thanks to their efforts, and a unanimous vote in the City Council, Springfield will now be raising the tobacco age from 18 to 21. I voted to raise the age statewide when it came up in the Senate last year, and am hopeful we can get another chance to do so this year. Advocacy like this makes a difference!” Sen. Lesser said.
Sen. Lesser is a longtime supporter of a bill introduced by Sen. Jason Lewis, An Act To Protect Youth from the Health Risks of Tobacco and Nicotine Addiction, which would raise the age for tobacco sales statewide to 21.