Age To Buy Cigarettes to Raise to 21 in NYC?

New York is making news again. You can wake up in a town that never sleeps and find they're banning the salt, banning the fat, banning the drinks and now- they are working on banning young New Yorkers from purchasing cigarettes until they are 21, up from the current 18.


The proposal advanced Monday that would give New York City the highest smoking age in the country. This marks the latest effort in a long campaign to limit smoking that began soon after Mayor Michael Bloomberg took office, with bans on smoking in restaurants and bars, and expanding more recently to bans at parks, beaches, plazas and other public places.

It comes in the wake of a recent proposal by Bloomberg to force stores to keep tobacco products out of sight, behind the counter or in a drawer.

The city banned smoking in restaurants and bars ten years ago, and has also banned smokes in parks and beaches. City smoking rates have dropped dramatically.

Under Mayor Bloomberg, the city has also banned transfats and required restaurants to post calorie counts. Bloomberg’s recent efforts to ban the sale of sodas larger than 16 ounces has been so far blocked by the courts.


Several states have a minimum age of 19 to buy cigarettes. Legislation was introduced in Texas to raise the age to 21, but it did not pass.