The addiction, suffering, and loss caused by tobacco is staggering - 95% of users are addicted before age 21. Tobacco is the single largest cause of preventable death and disease. We can change that.
“Tobacco 21” is a policy that:
- Makes 21 the minimum legal sale age for tobacco and nicotine products
- Prevents addiction and saves lives
- Has been passed in communities throughout the country
- Is supported by 75% of adults, including 70% of current smokers and 61% of those aged 18-20
Tobacco 21 is a policy priority developed by LiveWell Lawrence, a community wellness partnership launched in 2008 that has grown to an active, vibrant group of more than 700 community supporters and volunteers who participate in the coalition through its committees, newsletter, and events.
The LiveWell coalition supports local Tobacco 21 ordinances that increase the minimum legal sale age for tobacco and nicotine products to 21. Such policies have demonstrated reductions in high school tobacco use, which is critically important since 9 out of 10 current smokers begin before the age of 21. Those who make it to 21 without smoking are unlikely to start. Of the 929 high school graduates in Douglas County in 2016, almost 1/4 have tried tobacco products, and about 140 are (or will become) regular users. Many teens get tobacco from 18- to 20-year-old friends. Raising the legal age cuts off the social supply change to underage smokers.
We believe people deserve a future free from addiction. Count us among the growing number of organizations, businesses, and community members that support making 21 the minimum legal sale age for tobacco products.