Big Tobacco is stealing the lives, health and well-being of our kids in our community, and I will not stand for it. As someone who fights for greater community health outcomes, I wholeheartedly support the proposed ordinance to restrict the sale of flavored tobacco products in Missoula and ask City Council members to vote yes on the rule.
As a parent, I would do anything for my kids. I want to see them grow up to be healthy, thriving and free of addiction. Flavored tobacco products are geared toward what young people love to eat — bubblegum, cherry, vanilla, etc. and often placed with gum and candy near children’s eye level in convenience stores. These products are creating a youth epidemic that puts kids at risk for life-long addiction, death and disease.
We need to do more to protect kids at the local level. Their lives are at stake, and an ordinance restricting the sale of flavored tobacco products has the power to save future generations from the harmful effects of nicotine addiction. I hope the Missoula City Council will join more than 270 other cities who have passed similar rules.
Marcy Ballman, PhD,
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