New York increased to 21 years old to buy cigarettes

Besides increasing the minimum age for buying cigarettes, also forbids smoking in bars and restaurants, parks and squares and even on the beaches of the city prohibited. The same limitations apply from April 29 electronic cigarettes

Since Sunday, New York will need to be 21 to buy snuff.

"Under 21, no snuff," says a small sign at the entrance of trade Bouverie Iconic Magazine, selling newspapers, candy, coffee and cakes. And there is no way to cheat. The identity document is subjected to a scanner, without identification, no way to get cigarettes. The measure by which the legal age for snuff gain is increased from 18 to 21 is the first of its kind in a major U.S. city. Adopted on 19 November by the former mayor Michael Bloomberg, has not begun to take effect until six months later.

Thomas Wall, an ex-smoker of 24 years working in the world of architecture, is of the same opinion and said satisfied that the measure also covers electronic cigarettes, in which states no trust "for nothing". "This will discourage a number of young," he says, but warns that those high school students who wish anyway find "another way" to procure cigarettes. "It will happen as the laws on alcohol: you ask someone older to buy for them."

"It is an informed decision," says Pat Bonadies, a teacher who walks with her group of students from Union Square. "Young people are exposed to so many things ... When I was young, adolescents smoked more in restaurants and public places. And even my mom's friends who were pregnant smoking" she says. Smoke-free legislation in New York, in addition to raising the minimum age to buy cigarettes, smoking in bars and restaurants, parks and squares and even prohibits the city beaches. The same limitations apply from April 29 electronic cigarettes.

Also some residential buildings ban smoking. Snuff taxes are also higher in New York than in any other part of the United States: $ 5.85 per pack, bringing the price of a pack of cigarettes to about $ 12 with a minimum of 10 50.

According to official statistics of the city between 2002 and 2011, adult smokers increased from 21.5% to 14.8%. The percentage of young smokers, however, has not changed since 2007: 8.5%. The new law is due precisely to the will of the authorities to lower the consumption of snuff among young people. The goal in the long term is to get the percentage of smokers among people 18 to 20 years is reduced by 55%. New York and aspires to become an example in this topic for the whole country.

Source: EFE

traslation: Belén Zapata