Portland City Council Must Act to End the Sale of All Flavored Tobacco Products
Nation’s leading cancer advocacy organization urges Portland City Council to protect kids from Big Tobacco’s predatory marketing
PORTLAND – Today, the city of Portland will vote on a bill that would end the sale of all flavored tobacco products, including e-cigarettes and menthol flavored products. The American Cancer Society Cancer Action Network (ACS CAN) urges City Councilors to prioritize the health of children and historically marginalized communities over Big Tobacco’s interests and bottom line.
The following is a statement from ACS CAN Lead Volunteer and Portland Resident Jeff Bennett:
“As a cancer survivor, I want to do everything in my power to ensure others never hear the words ‘you have cancer’ – part of that depends on combatting youth tobacco use – which is currently surging here in Maine. What is driving the massive surge in tobacco use among youth? Flavored tobacco. Fruit and candy flavored products like cotton candy, fruit punch, menthol and mint are driving Big Tobacco’s comeback attempt.
“Menthol, mint and other candy- and fruit-flavored tobacco products are a key part of the tobacco industry’s strategy to entice our youth into a potential lifetime of addiction. Research shows that flavors drive the unprecedented increase in youth tobacco uptake, with 81% of kids who have ever tried tobacco starting with a flavored product. It’s up to City Councilors to prioritize public health and protect our kids and communities from these flavored products.
“Portland has the opportunity to be on the forefront of protecting the public from Big Tobacco’s continued targeting and save lives by doing so. I urge City Councilors to pass this ordinance ending the sale of all flavored tobacco products, without exemptions.”
About ACS CAN at 20
The American Cancer Society Cancer Action Network (ACS CAN) makes cancer a top priority for policymakers at every level of government. ACS CAN empowers volunteers across the country to make their voices heard to influence evidence-based public policy change that saves lives. We believe everyone should have a fair and just opportunity to prevent, find, treat, and survive cancer. Since 2001, as the American Cancer Society’s nonprofit, nonpartisan advocacy affiliate, ACS CAN has successfully advocated for billions of dollars in cancer research funding, expanded access to quality affordable health care, and made workplaces, including restaurants and bars, smoke-free. As we mark our 20th anniversary, we’re more determined than ever to stand together with our volunteers and save more lives from cancer. Join the fight by visiting www.fightcancer.org