Florida vape retailers urged to enforce existing vape rules


Retail store owners in Florida must obtain a state license to sell nicotine products and post signs at checkouts that clearly state that selling products to anyone under 21 is illegal.

As of October 1, 2021, it is illegal for anyone 21 or younger to purchase vaping products in the Sunshine State. However, Toledo found that this regulation was still not enforced. “I know they were selling to minors because someone told me they bought something there and I wanted to make sure they would respect,” she said.

The House Rep co-sponsored 21 tobacco legislation in the 2021 session, bringing the state into compliance with federal law. The measure states that retail store owners must obtain a state license to sell nicotine products and must post signs at checkouts that clearly state that selling products to people under 21 years is illegal.

Data on smoking age limits

Meanwhile, a recent study looking at the effects of California’s 2016 law raising the legal age for selling tobacco from 18 to 21 (T21), reported positive trends. The data compiled indicated that T21 was having positive public health effects for 7th, 9th, and 11th graders across California. The results were summarized on News-Medical as follows:

  • “Reduced lifetime prevalence of smokeless tobacco and e-cigarette use, and past-month smokeless tobacco use in the overall student population.
  • Increase in the prevalence of e-cigarette use in the past month.
  • Reduction in lifetime and past 30-day use of all tobacco and nicotine products among Latinx youth.
  • Differential but positive public health effects for other racial and ethnic groups.

Mixed results

An earlier study conducted by UC Davis Comprehensive Cancer Center reported mixed results. Researchers Melanie Dove, Susan Stewart and Elisa Tong analyzed these patterns before and after the law was implemented. Next, they compared California to other states that don’t have a T21 policy in place, looking at data from the 2012-2019 Behavioral Risk Factor Surveillance System.

The study showed that the new T21 law did not have a big impact. “Before California’s T21 policy, there was an 11% annual decrease in the likelihood of smoking among 18-20 year olds in California and a 6% decrease in the benchmark states. After the policy, these trends n have not changed significantly.

“For daily smoking, there was an 8% annual decrease before the policy and a 26% annual decrease after the policy among 18-20 year olds in California; DID estimates were 0.80 (95% CI: 0.57, 1.14) using baseline states as a comparison and 0.62 (95% CI: 0.41, 0.95) using 21 to 23 year olds in California as a comparison,” the Abstract study reports.

Differing opinions on raising the smoking age limit to 21


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