Many New Yorkers are seeing more and more tobacco in our communities. And in some of our most vulnerable communities, tobacco is both persistent and pervasive: chronic disparities of higher tobacco use and secondhand smoke exposure rates are coupled with widespread availability of dangerous tobacco products. Alarmingly, many neighborhoods are food deserts void of healthy foods, yet are also tobacco swamps abundant with deadly and addictive tobacco products. The more tobacco outlets we have in New York City, the more outlets there are for kids to get hooked on tobacco. Neighborhoods swamped with tobacco make it easy to start and harder to quit. We can help end the tobacco epidemic by ending tobacco proliferation in our neighborhoods. NYC doesn’t need even more tobacco outlets to provide more easy access to deadly tobacco products.
On August 28, 2017, New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio signed into law a package of tobacco legislation, which included a cap on the number of tobacco retail outlets in each of the 59 community districts. This new law will reduce the number of tobacco retailers in all NYC neighborhoods. Encouraging property owners to voluntarily prohibit tobacco retail in their commercial storefront space, as well as engaging BIDs, LDCs and EDCs to examine the impact of tobacco tunnels when considering their retail attraction strategy will supplement the City’s comprehensive tobacco control policy efforts and presents an additional opportunity to help protect youth and other vulnerable New Yorkers from exposure to deadly and addictive products.
NYC Smoke-Free will continue working to end tobacco proliferation because deadly and addictive tobacco products do not belong on nearly every block and corner of our neighborhoods. Our kids have seen enough tobacco. Get more information here, to learn more about tobacco proliferation in New York State.