Retailers reduce youth access to tobacco

Published 9:24 am Thursday, January 3, 2019

In an effort to decrease youth access to tobacco products in our area, Crossroads Community Services Board (CSB) is participating in the Counter Act Campaign.

The main goal of the campaign is to provide all tobacco merchants with information about tobacco laws as they pertain to underage buyers and explain the dangers of violating the law. Merchants learn how to check for fake IDs and are given a toolkit with educational information for their employees. In addition, retailers are asked to sign a pledge stating they are committed to being in full compliance with all federal, state and local laws pertaining to tobacco sales to minors.

In 2018, the retailer violation rate (RVR) for the state of Virginia was 10.6 percent, compared to the RVR of 5.6 percent in the Crossroads CSB service area. Crossroads Prevention Services staff will continue to educate merchants on an ongoing basis in order to keep the RVR low. Some area merchants have committed to protecting our children’s health by signing the Counter Act Merchant Pledge which includes: eliminating tobacco self-service displays, removing tobacco advertising close to candy displays and thoroughly training employees to check IDs of anyone under the age of 27 purchasing tobacco.

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