City of San Diego Passes Law Banning Sale of Flavored Tobacco Products

Written by Lev Finzi

A new law was signed in the city of San Diego that bans the sale of flavored tobacco. The law was signed by the current Mayor of the city of San Diego, Todd Gloria. 

On Tuesday, May 31st, San Diego City Councilmembers had united with the San Diego School Board Trustees to set forth a bill that would halt the sale of flavored E-Cigarettes and tobacco. Councilwomen Marni Von Wilpert and Jennifer Campbell were the ones to help the bill catch popularity, with Gloria having it signed right after. The bill is called “Stop Adolescent Addiction to Flavored E-Cigarettes Act”, or the SAAFE Act.

Von Wilpert had introduced the SAAFE Act to the San Diego City Council, to which some had given their support. Von Wilpert had said that the ban will single out certain nicotine and tobacco products that “appeal to children through candy and fruit flavors, as an attempt to hide the harshness of nicotine and as a direct attempt to appeal to a younger audience,”

Von Wilpert had added that the Act would “Save lives and safeguard children’s health,…Our new partnership with San Diego schools will empower parents with vital health resources so we do everything possible to prevent Big Tobacco from hooking our children and hijacking their futures.

Members of the San Diego School Board Trustees Richard Barrera and Zachery Patterson had connected with the City Council to get the message out about the Act and to help parents understand the importance and urgency of this issue. Teenage nicotine and drug use rates have risen since the introduction of candy and fruit-flavored E-Cigarettes and tobacco. The Act will hopefully help to show people resources and solutions to guide youth away from harm.

Jennifer Campbell had this to say about the new law: “The tobacco industry calls these candy-flavored tobacco products, but doctors like me call it poison,… Today, San Diego is scoring a big victory against big tobacco and a big win to protect our children’s health. We are stopping the sale of these vile products that lure our children into a life of addiction and starting a true partnership with local schools to more seriously address the youth vaping epidemic,” 

Many have come out against the law, but for a different reason than others may assume, Chris Cate, the only Republican City Council member had said “As a father of three young children, I support the desire to reduce youth tobacco use. As a policymaker though, I don’t see it my responsibility to harm or punish those individuals and businesses that are taking part in a legal activity.”

Photo Cred: Eduardo Munoz/Reuters