Tobacco Targets Youth
The tobacco industry has a long history of targeting youth. Despite gains made in tobacco prevention in years past, tobacco use continues to be the leading cause of preventable death in the United States,1 and far too many youth are still being deceived by the industry’s marketing tactics and picking up the deadly habit. “Tobacco Targets Youth” is an educational campaign to raise awareness and educate Jefferson County residents about how youth are being targeted by the tobacco industry and how easy it still is for youth to access and use tobacco products.
Tobacco Use Among High School Students in Colorado, 2015 2
|Ever smoked a whole cigarette||20%|
|Current cigarette use||8.6%|
|Current e-cigarette use||26%|
|Current smokeless tobacco use||4.9%|
|Current cigar/little cigar use||8.9%|
|Tried to quit in the past year
(among current smokers)
|Easy or very easy to get cigarettes
(only among those 17 years old and younger)
Effective Strategies to Reduce Youth Access to Tobacco:
- In all but seven Colorado communities, tobacco retailers are not required to have a tobacco license, unlike the license required to sell alcohol. This means that tobacco can be sold by anyone anywhere in most Colorado communities. The Tobacco Control Legal Consortium states that policies to increase and enforce restrictions on illegal sales to minors, such as licensing of tobacco retailers, are essential in preventing youth from using tobacco.11
- Learn more about tobacco retail licensing.
- There is also no minimum age limit for those who sell tobacco in Colorado. A 2001 study indicated that sales clerks under the age of 18 are more likely than clerks 18 or older to sell tobacco to minors.12
- Additionally, smoke-free laws have been proven as an effective strategy to reduce youth smoking.13
Does a tobacco retail license impact the rate of illegal sales to minors?14
|Manitou Springs, CO||No data||No data|
|Steamboat Springs, CO||6%||2%|
|Rocky Ford, CO||No data||No data|
|Average reduction = 76%|
Here are some ways YOU can help protect Jeffco youth from tobacco:
2. Healthy Kids Colorado Survey 2015
11. McLaughlin I. License to Kill?: Tobacco Retailer Licensing as an Effective Enforcement Tool. Tobacco Control Legal Consortium, 2010.
12. DiFranza JR, Colman M., “Sources of Tobacco for Youths in Communities with Strong Enforcement of Youth Access Laws,” Tobacco Control, 10:323-3328, 2001.
14. Data provided by Counter Tools Store Mapper Colorado (includes FDA and Synar Program data), El Paso County Public Health, and Fountain Police Department.