2020 Colorado Policy and Legislative Priorities

A Year of Prevention


The American Cancer Society Cancer Action Network will focus 2020 state legislative priorities on cancer prevention in the areas of tobacco control, colorectal cancer, and skin cancer. 


Tobacco Control

Raising the minimum age of sale to 21 would reduce initiation, tobacco-related morbidity and mortality across the lifespan, and ultimately save lives.

Strong tobacco 21 laws Should:

  • Cover all tobacco products, including e-cigarettes.
  • Implement measures that enable active enforcement, such as retailer licensing and penalties, including license suspension and revocation.

Strong tobacco 21 laws Should NOT:

  • Create new categories of products, which exempt certain products from other tobacco control laws.
  • Penalize youth.
  • Preempt other jurisdictions from passing stronger tobacco control laws.


Colorectal Cancer Screening

In the last decade, new data has emerged about the changing risk of colorectal cancer in younger adults. This includes recent analyses published by ACS showing a 51% increase in colorectal cancer among those under age 55 since 1994. Adults born around 1990 have twice the risk of colon cancer and four times the risk of rectal cancer compared with adults born around 1950.

Strong state policies will:

  • Support polices that require insurers to begin screening adults starting at age 45, as recommended by the American Cancer Society.
  • Appropriate funds to establish or invest in state colorectal cancer screening and control programs for uninsured or underinsured residents.
  • Support policies that require insurers to cover follow-up colonoscopies after a positive stool test and guarantee that patients do not face out-of-pocket costs for polyp removal, anesthesia, pre-screening consultations or laboratory services related to colon cancer screening.
  • Support evidence-based educational efforts to improve uptake of preventive services, particularly in disparate populations.


Indoor Tanning

Skin cancer is the most commonly diagnosed cancer in the U.S. Rates have continued to rise over the past 30 years. The greatest avoidable known risk factor for skin cancer is the use of commercial indoor tanning devices. Yet misconceptions about indoor tanning persist in large part because of misleading advertising and inaccurate health claims put forth by the tanning industry.

  • Laws that prohibit the use of indoor tanning devices for individuals under the age of 18 without any exemptions are effective in deterring minors from using tanning devices and can help to reduce skin cancer incidence and mortality rates across the country.