Status Of Tobacco Sales To Youth In Rio Arriba
RIO ARRIBA COUNTY – It is with great pleasure that North Central Community Based Services, Inc. (NCCBS) reports that tobacco merchants in Northern Rio Arriba area are in compliance with the State Tobacco Products Act and are not selling tobacco products to anyone under the legal age of 18.
NCCBS implements the Synar Program in Northern Rio Arriba County. Through this program NCCBS conducts in person merchant education to State designated tobacco vendors and provides vendors with posters and signage required to be posted by New Mexico State law on the store premises, and other resource materials that explain the law and health consequences of tobacco use.
NCCBS conducted Synar Merchant Education to 9 vendors in northern Rio Arriba. Following the merchant education, NCCBS conducted random, unannounced compliance checks of State assigned tobacco merchants. NCCBS conducted 5 Synar Compliance Checks and not any of the merchants and/or vendors sold to minors.
NCCBS stated that they wish to thank all our merchants and vendors for not selling tobacco products to anyone under the age of 18.
OVERVIEW OF THE PROBLEM
Preventing tobacco use among youth is critical to ending the tobacco epidemic in the United States.
- Tobacco use is started and established primarily during adolescence.
- Nearly 9 out of 10 cigarette smokers first tried smoking by age 18, and 99% first tried smoking by age 26.
- Each day in the United States, more than 3,800 youth aged 18 years or younger smoke their first cigarette, and an additional 2,100 youth and young adults become daily cigarette smokers.
- Youth use of tobacco in any form is unsafe.
If smoking continues at the current rate among youth in this country, 5.6 million of today’s Americans younger than 18 will die early from a smoking-related illness. That’s about 1 of every 13 Americans aged 17 years or younger alive today.
ABOUT THE SYNAR AMENDMENT
In July 1992, Congress enacted the Alcohol, Drug Abuse, and Mental Health Administration Reorganization Act (P.L. 102-321), which includes the Synar Amendment (section 1926) aimed at decreasing youth access to tobacco. This amendment requires states to enact and enforce laws prohibiting the sale or distribution of tobacco products to individuals under 18 years old. To determine compliance with the legislation, the amendment requires each state and U.S. jurisdiction to conduct annual, random, unannounced inspections of retail tobacco outlets and to report the findings to the Secretary of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (DHHS). States that do not comply with the requirements set forth in the amendment are subject to a penalty of 40 percent of their federal Substance Abuse Prevention and Treatment Block grant.