Tobacco Sale Enforcement
Saving our Children ~ Preventing the selling of tobacco products to minors
Beginning October 1, 2019, the new minimum sales age for all tobacco products in Maryland is 21 (“T21”). This includes sales of all electronic smoking devices—e-cigarettes, vapes, pod devices such as JUUL®, e-liquids, and component parts and accessories.
Per state guidelines, all states must comply with the federal Synar Amendment, adopted in 1992, which requires states to enact and enforce laws prohibiting the sale or distribution of tobacco products to youth under the age of 21. States must conduct annual unannounced inspections of tobacco retail outlets and work to reduce youth access to tobacco. Violation rates will be no more that 20%.
What does our local program do?
We partner/fund the Sheriff’s office to perform compliance checks on all retailers in the county (38 x 2 =76 checks).
We partner/fund 2 Non-Govt. Organizations (NGOs) to provide all retailers’ education about tobacco laws and no tobacco sales to minors. They visit each retailer 2 times per year.
Our staff conducts education to retailers. We also partner with schools in providing an education program for youth who violate tobacco, e-cigarette laws. We partner with local organizations in educating youth about the effects of tobacco and
e-cigs. We offer leadership meetings to bring awareness to the community about tobacco laws and the impact the use of nicotine products has on our youth, including providing a gateway to other drug use.