Rep. Donna Shalala Backs Proposal That Would Increase Age to Buy Tobacco From 18 to 21

By  //  April 18, 2019

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CDC reported 78 percent increase in current e-cigarette use by high school students in 2017-2018

Freshman U.S. Rep. Donna Shalala, D-Fla., who led the U.S. Health and Human Services Department for eight years in the Clinton administration, turned her attention this week to the rising number of young Americans using tobacco and e-cigarettes, backing a proposal to raise the age for purchasing tobacco from 18 to 21. (Image for Space Coast Daily)

(SUNSHINE STATE NEWS) – Freshman U.S. Rep. Donna Shalala, D-Fla., who led the U.S. Health and Human Services Department for eight years in the Clinton administration, turned her attention this week to the rising number of young Americans using tobacco and e-cigarettes, backing a proposal to raise the age for purchasing tobacco from 18 to 21.

Shalala paired up with U.S. Rep. Frank Pallone, D-NJ, the chairman of the U.S. House Energy and Commerce Committee to bring out the “Reversing the Youth Tobacco Epidemic Act.”

The congresswoman’s office offered the rationale for why she was championing the proposal.

“The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) reported an alarming 78 percent increase in current e-cigarette use by high school students and 48 percent increase among middle school students from 2017 to 2018.

According to reports, the sharp increase in tobacco use in recent years could reverse years of progress in reducing youth tobacco use in America,” Shalala’s office noted.

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