Tobacco Retail Licensing
Tobacco companies are known for targeting many groups, and they try to get youth hooked on tobacco products. The tobacco industry floods lower income neighborhoods and communities of color with cheap, candy and menthol-flavored tobacco products, like e-cigarettes. This makes it enticing and easier for youth to get tobacco products. Youth smoking and vaping have grown to alarming rates, but communities are working together to use local laws to prevent future generations from getting hooked on tobacco.
One way communities are keeping youth safe from tobacco, is through a Tobacco Retail Licensing (TRL) ordinance. A local TRL ordinance makes certain tobacco products that are sold in stores less accessible to youth and it enables cities to hold tobacco retailers accountable if they sell tobacco products to minors. Through a TRL, local cities can:
- Decide what kind of tobacco products can be sold. For example, they can prohibit the sale of flavored tobacco and vaping products designed to entice youth.
- Determine how tobacco products are sold, by increasing the minimum price or package sizes to make tobacco less affordable.
- Address where tobacco products can be sold, such as banning the sale of tobacco in youth-populated areas or ensuring that pharmacies are tobacco-free.
The Coalition partners with Alameda County communities to advocate for strong TRL ordinances. Many of these laws are already in effect and being implemented successfully. In these communities, evidence shows significant decreases in illegal sales of tobacco products to minors.
- African American Tobacco Leadership Council
- Black Lives Black Lungs: A Film by Lincoln Mondy
- Flavored Tobacco Products - Factsheets (Campaign for Tobacco-Free Kids)
- Flavored Tobacco Use Among Youth and Young Adults (The Truth Initiative)
- “Oakland’s ongoing battle with tobacco has deadly links to its new fight with COVID-19” (Oaklandside)
- Resources for Teachers and Community-Based Organizations (Stanford Medicine)
- Point of Sale Tobacco Pricing (ChangeLab Solutions)
- Tobacco-Free Pharmacies (American Nonsmokers’ Rights Foundation)