Cigarettes and related tobacco products should not be of easy access to our youth. Some youth have also reported that scenes in movies, images throughout the media and social media websites also make the use of traditional cigarettes, hookah, cigars and e-cigarette use appealing to them. There is too much tobacco marketing exposure and not enough information for our youth on the many dangers and harms of nicotine addiction.
Stronger education and limiting youth exposure to tobacco marketing are what our Bronx youth need to make informed decisions in regards to their health. We don’t need more ways for kids and teens to be hooked on nicotine. Nicotine is dangerous for kids at any age, whether they are coming from e-cigarettes, cigars or cigarettes. Programs such as Reality Check of NYC Smoke-Free are hoping to address these concerns and help youth take action and speak up against Big Tobacco in their schools and communities. For more information, or to lend your support, visit our website at NYCSmoke-Free.org.
Vonetta Dudley lives in the Bronx. She works for Bronx Reality Check: Youth Engagement, part of NYC Smoke-Free. Point of view is a column open to all.