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Engel Authored Anti-Tobacco Provisions Pass the House

Engel Authored Anti-Tobacco Provisions Pass the House

The House today passed anti-tobacco and anti-vaping provisions authored by Congressman Eliot L. Engel as part of the Protecting American Lungs and Reversing the Youth Tobacco Epidemic Act, H.R. 2339.

“Kids in New York are using tobacco products like e-cigarettes at increasing rates, threatening the progress we’ve made in reducing youth tobacco use,” said Rep. Engel. “I want to thank Chairman Pallone for including my provisions that ensure federal tobacco prevention campaigns are updated to include all young Americans.”

The Engel written provisions located in Section 107 of H.R. 2339 direct federal health agencies such as the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) to update youth tobacco prevention public awareness campaigns to include programming for young Americans between the ages of 18 and 21. This fills an important education gap as Congress raised the federal tobacco purchasing age to 21, but did not update corresponding prevention efforts.

In addition to including Congressman Engel’s provisions, H.R. 2339 takes a number of steps to address the rising rates of youth tobacco use, particularly e-cigarettes. This legislation bans kid-appealing flavors in e-cigarettes such as gummy bear and cotton candy, which has led to an epidemic of middle and high school students using these products. It also extends marketing restrictions that apply to traditional cigarettes to e-cigarettes.

Congressman Engel spoke about his provisions and the bill on the House floor, which can be viewed here: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=RMwtmsHTIss&feature=youtu.be

Congressman Engel has also taken other steps to protect young Americans from nicotine and tobacco products. On July 25, 2019, he introduced the Smoke-Free Schools which bans vaping in schools and childcare facilities that receive federal funding. On January 23, 2020, he led over 50 House Democrats on a letter criticizing the Trump Administration’s watered-down ban on flavored e-cigarettes and demanding a complete ban. More recently, he introduced the Vaping Prevention on College Campuses Act, H.R. 5886, which directs federal agencies to develop toolkits that will help higher education institutions reduce e-cigarette use among their students.