HCN News & Notes

Cancer Patients, Survivors to Urge Legislators to Protect Kids from Tobacco

BOSTON — Nearly 100 cancer patients, survivors, and their families from throughout Massachusetts will gather at the State House on Wednesday, March 28 to ask legislators to support legislation protecting youth from the dangers of nicotine addiction.

The visit is part of the American Cancer Society Cancer Action Network’s (ACS CAN) annual lobby day, which will bring more than 100 people touched by cancer together to call on the Massachusetts Legislature to make cancer a priority.

This year, nearly 37,130 people will be diagnosed with cancer in Massachusetts, and an estimated 12,620 will lose their battle with the disease. But those gathering at the State House are working with legislators to change that, by taking a stand against tobacco use — an addiction responsible for nearly one-third of all cancer deaths. This year, more than 2,800 Massachusetts kids will become new daily smokers, and 95{06cf2b9696b159f874511d23dbc893eb1ac83014175ed30550cfff22781411e5} of adults who smoke started by the age of 21.

Specifically, the legislative ask will be to support a bill that would increase the age of sale for tobacco products from 18 to 21, include e-cigarettes in the smoke-free workplace law, and prohibit sales of tobacco in facilities that provide healthcare, such as pharmacies.