Maryland Tobacco Law 21 starting Oct. 1st
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE CONTACT: Jennifer Johnson
(410) 219-3947 (Office)
(410) 251-5379 (Cell)
MARYLAND TOBACCO 21 LAW GOES INTO EFFECT OCTOBER 1, 2019
(September 30, 2019, Salisbury, MD) Effective October 1, 2019, the statewide sales age for tobacco and tobacco-related products increases to 21. The law, dubbed “T21,” prohibits the sale to anyone under age 21 of:
· traditional tobacco products;
· electronic smoking devices including e-cigarettes, vape pens, pod devices such as JUUL®;
· e-liquids (even those not containing nicotine), components, parts and accessories.
The only age group exempted from this law is active duty military personnel ages 18 or older with valid military identification. A valid driver’s license or other valid government-issued ID are the only acceptable forms of identification for any tobacco purchase (employer or school IDs are not permitted).
Maryland joins 17 other states in implementing a T21 law in response to the U.S. Surgeon General’s warning in 2018 that e-cigarette use among youth is an “epidemic.” E-cigarette use among U.S. high school students increased 78% between 2017 and 2018. 1 in 5 high school students and 1 in 20 middle school students reported using e-cigarettes.
Retailers are required to post a clearly visible sign in their establishments stating, “No person under the age of 21 may be sold tobacco products without military identification.” The Maryland Department of Health is mailing signs to tobacco retailers licensed in the state, including vape shops. Signs are also available for download at health.maryland.gov/notobaccosalestominors.
For more information about the T21 law or help quitting tobacco or e-cigarette use, contact the Wicomico County Health Department at 410-334-3480/WICOMICOHEALTH.ORG or call Maryland’s Quit Line at 1-800 Quit-Now (784-8669).