2020 South Carolina Legislative Priorities

Victory in the fight against cancer requires bold new public policies that promote cancer prevention, early detection of cancer, and expand access to quality, affordable health care. Lawmakers make many decisions that impact the lives of South Carolinians touched by cancer and their leadership is vital to defeating this disease. In 2020, the American Cancer Society Cancer Action Network (ACS CAN) will work with the South Carolina General Assembly in support of the following priorities:

Reducing the Toll of Tobacco

  • Smoke-free Air:  Implement comprehensive smoke-free policies that include all restaurants, bars, casinos, and non-hospitality workplaces at the state and local level.  ACS CAN will also work to defend existing comprehensive laws and expand laws that are not comprehensive.
  • Tobacco Taxes: ACS CAN will advocate to increase the cigarette tax by $1.50 per pack with an increase in the tax on other tobacco products to parallel the new rate. Increasing the price of cigarettes and all other tobacco products through regular and significant tobacco tax increases helps to keep kids from starting to use tobacco and helps adults quit.  We encourage lawmakers to use funds from the tobacco taxes to fund and sustain evidence-based, statewide tobacco use prevention and cessation programs.
  • Tobacco Retail Licensure:  ACS CAN will advocate for South Carolina to require tobacco retailers to be licensed to sell tobacco products.  South Carolina currently does not require retailers to purchase a license.  Without retailer licensing, SC cannot ensure tobacco retailers are complying with all applicable laws including sales to youth.  

Cancer Prevention and Early Detection

  • Breast and Cervical Cancer: ACS CAN will advocate to maintain funding of $1 million for The Best Chance Network, the state breast and cervical cancer screening program for low-income uninsured and underinsured women administered by the SC Department of Health and Environmental Control.
  • Colorectal Cancer: ACS CAN will work to maintain funding of $1 million for colorectal cancer screening, treatment, and patient navigation programs administered through the University of South Carolina Center for Colon Cancer Prevention.

Quality of Life

  • Protecting Access to Pain Medication for Cancer Patients: ACS CAN will monitor legislative proposals regarding the prescribing of opioid pain medications and advocate for a balanced approach that promotes safe prescribing and dispensing of pain management medication that does not interfere with access to these medicines for the cancer patients and survivors who need them.

Skin Cancer Prevention

  • Indoor Tanning Devices: ACS CAN will advocate for a state law to prohibit the use of indoor tanning devices by those under the age of 18, ensure all consumers are properly informed of their risk prior to use, and require all indoor tanning devices to be properly regulated with effective enforcement provisions in place. 

For more information, contact: Beth Johnson, Government Relations Director ACS CAN  

[email protected]/ 843-858-2310


The American Cancer Society Cancer Action Network • www.fightcancer.org/southcarolina

ACS CAN, the nonprofit, nonpartisan advocacy affiliate of the American Cancer Society, supports evidence-based policy and legislative solutions designed to eliminate cancer as a major health problem. ACS CAN works to encourage elected officials and candidates to make cancer a top priority. ACS CAN gives ordinary people extraordinary power to fight cancer with the training and tools they need to make their voices heard.