Hello, my name is Cole Rowland and I am a Junior from Portales HS in the Southeast region of New Mexico. This will be my second year in the Evolvement program, and my first year as a part of the ENMLT or Evolvement Leadership Team. Youth advocacy has been a subject that I am very passionate about, getting involved is something I care a lot about and the outcomes of it are very rewarding.
As a new member of the ENMLT, I am so excited to be a part of the change that helps the youth of New Mexico. I feel that the youth need to be able to speak up and have a voice. After all, the youth is the future so they should have a voice in the matter. Being able to voice their opinions early in life sets them up to not have fear of it when they get older. Having a voice is the most powerful thing in life and to be able to defend yourself and speak up about something that isn’t right is very empowering.
Being able to be a part of the Evolvement program has helped me learn to speak up about more sensitive subjects and not be afraid to voice my opinion. At the Peanut Valley Festival in October of 2019 where this picture was taken, I was given many opportunities to voice my opinion and spread awareness about the effects of tobacco on my generation. As a program, we fought for the passing of tobacco retail licensing for tobacco products to provide accountability and assurance that the illegal sale of tobacco to minors would significantly decrease. By making it harder for the youth to obtain tobacco, the easier it would be to quit. Encouraging people to be pro-policy had its fair share of difficulties, but in the end, as an organization, we accomplished that goal with the support of thousands of New Mexicans that expressed their concern on the topic.
The passing of the tobacco retail licensing bill was a major success in youth activism within New Mexico. It showed that together, the youth can do great things when we voice our opinions and spread awareness. The Evolvement program has brought me to realize that the youth have the potential to do outstanding things. I hope that through being a part of the leadership team I will be able to accomplish many more great things this coming year.
My name is Emilia Coombs. I am a sophomore at Arrowhead Park Early College High School in Las Cruces, New Mexico. I have been a member of Evolvement, a renowned statewide youth engagement program, for two years. As part of Evolvement, I have been working on tobacco prevention through the No Minor Sale campaign, which works on ending the illegal sale of tobacco products to minors of New Mexico. I am so excited to say that the policy that the No Minor Sale campaign has been advocating for in order to end tobacco sales to minors has been signed by Governor Michelle Lujan Grisham and will be effective next year on January 1st, 2021! We did it! The Tobacco Products Act is going to help stop the tobacco industry from targeting children and will help reduce illegal tobacco sales to minors.
The Tobacco Products Act will help end illegal tobacco sales to minors for many reasons. To mirror recent federal policy, it will raise the state minimum legal sales age to 21 which gives young adults more time to mature before making the important decision of whether or not they should use tobacco products.
In addition, the Tobacco Products Act includes statewide tobacco retail licensing which is a huge step forward in New Mexico. It is super important to have strong policies like this because it enforces important laws and guidelines in order to protect people. This policy, specifically, protects minors from the dangers of tobacco products, including e-cigarettes. Retail licensing guarantees up-to-date information on what stores are selling tobacco products and where they are located in New Mexico which helps better monitor them. Equally important, statewide retail licensing will require tobacco retail stores to renew their license every year. Another component is that it will help make sure stores do not sell to minors because store owners will be punished instead of clerks who sell to youth or youth who attempt to purchase tobacco products. Lastly, future tobacco retail stores will be unable to open within 300 feet of a school.
This policy stops the tobacco industry from taking advantage of children. Nearly 90% of tobacco users start as a minor, so by helping stop minor sales, this policy will help create a tobacco-free future. It will save my generation from the dangers of tobacco which will make our lives so much better. So many youth become addicted to tobacco products, including e-cigarettes, and I want to end that thread. Sadly, 1 in 3 tobacco users die from tobacco-related illnesses, and they deserve better. They deserve a life unharmed by tobacco products and the problems and illnesses it causes.
I work on the No Minor Sale campaign-- which has taught me how policy could save thousands of lives-- because I want to make a difference in my community by helping the youth of my generation decide to live tobacco-free. I hope you choose to support this policy to help create a tobacco-free future.
Howdy there, my name is Aracely Flores-Ramirez and I’m a junior at Valencia High School in Los Lunas. This is my very first year with the Evolvement program here in New Mexico. Even before I learned about this amazing program and the tobacco prevention campaigns it works on, including No Minor Sale, keeping my generation from becoming addicted to tobacco has always been a priority to me. I’ve gone to talk to our state senators and representatives about tobacco-related policies multiple times since I was in the eighth grade.
This year, on February 10th, I had the pleasure of attending the New Mexico State Capitol in Santa Fe to learn about Tobacco Retail Licensing with the No Minor Sale Campaign. In fact, there was a bill, which I am extremely happy to say, that includes statewide Tobacco Retail Licensing that passed in the state of New Mexico. The Tobacco Products Act, which was signed by the New Mexico Governor on March 4th, 2020, goes into law January 1st, 2021. This policy ensures that more retail stores are held accountable for illegal tobacco product sales to minors. This will have an astronomical effect on the availability of tobacco to youth today. Most teenagers only start using tobacco products (such as e-cigarettes) because they tried it with a friend, and they could keep getting their hands on it after their first taste. It is hard to change the issue of negative peer pressure, but it is easier to stop it at the inciting incident. Tobacco Retail Licensing was a vital step in stopping the cycle.
It is through our voices, as youth advocates, that we can stop more stories like this moving forward. Policy makers have no idea what problems our generation is facing unless we speak up. Legislators, and adults in general, are not superhuman. They don’t know what issues we face and much less how to connect with us to solve it. It is our job to persuade them, as youth advocates, that it is worth the effort. You have to be confident, passionate, educated and know what you’re talking about. If legislators knew how a tobacco prevention policy would affect them and their own lives, they would be more likely to support it. Most legislators have children or know of other teenagers who are affected by these same issues and can relate to what you’re trying to say. If we work in collaboration with members of the state legislature, the impact will be much greater. Nobody knows us like we know ourselves which is why we have to take responsibility for our fellow students. Evolvement students, such as myself, have used this attitude in their work with the No Minor Sale Campaign and advocating for Tobacco Retail Licensing, which was ultimately passed, in part, due to our hard work.
Think of it like this. The more work we do now, the less work we’ll have to do later. Instead of spending money on tobacco cessation programs in the future, I feel it’s more beneficial to focus on prevention work so fellow students will not need these programs in the future. It’s easy to live in the moment and forget about the future. Always remember the end goal in these times! Change happens slowly. You may not see the effects of your advocacy for years, and that’s ok. In the end, you likely helped at least one person. You did your part to create a healthier community.
There is no time like the present to act. Everyone has the power to help someone else. Email your representatives, ask them out to coffee and reach out to your community to talk about No Minor Sale and tobacco prevention here in New Mexico. So, go out and do your part!
Hello, my name is Alisia Mejia. I am a sophomore at Atrisco Heritage Academy in Albuquerque, New Mexico and this is my first year in Evolvement. Evolvement is a program for youth that is partnered with the No Minor Sale campaign. No Minor Sale is a campaign that advocated for statewide tobacco retail licensing in New Mexico to prevent the illegal sale of tobacco products, including e-cigarettes, to minors. Did you know that 1 in 6 retail stores sell tobacco products to youth under the age of 18?
I want to see New Mexico be a healthier state and for our youth to have a better future. I feel that youth and policymakers in New Mexico should care about tobacco products being sold to minors and my peers. We should care for our future and our friends because tobacco is the leading cause of death compared to aids, alcohol, homicide, and car accidents combined. I don’t want 12-year-olds in my community purchasing tobacco products and dying because they are becoming addicted to tobacco and nicotine products. We really need to change the future because we are the future.
Through Evolvement and my work on the No Minor Sale Campaign, I had the opportunity to go to the New Mexico state capitol building in Santa Fe on January 28th. At the capitol I spoke to seven legislators, including one state senator, and asked them to support statewide tobacco retail licensing in New Mexico to reduce illegal tobacco sales to minors on behalf of the No Minor Sale campaign. After I met with the seven legislators, I thought most of them were supportive of tobacco retail licensing. When I met with the first legislator, who happened to be State Senator Candace Gould, I was quite nervous. But after I met with a few more legislators, I gained more confidence and felt more outgoing to speak about tobacco and how it affects New Mexico. With that, statewide tobacco retail licensing was signed into law on March 4th, 2020 and will go into law January 1, 2021. I think it’s important for youth to communicate with policymakers about tobacco prevention because we are going to be the next generation in decision-making and we can prevent young children from being affected by tobacco.
Working on No Minor Scale shows me that kids are getting a hold of tobacco products at a very young age. My work on the campaign and Evolvement has also shown me that I can have the confidence in myself to change the future of health in my state. Working with the No Minor Sale campaign made me realize that New Mexico needs to pay more attention to who is selling tobacco and to whom they are selling to.
If an organization you are affiliated with is interested in joining the movement to protect our youth from the harmful effects of tobacco, please contact Michael@NoMinorSale.com.
On March 4th, the Tobacco Products Act, sponsored by State Senators Linda Lopez and Gabriel Ramos and State Representatives Joanne Ferrary and Liz Thomson, was signed into law by New Mexico Governor Michelle Lujan Grisham. The new law goes into effect January 1, 2021.
The law requires tobacco distributors, manufacturers and retailers to acquire and possess a license for distributing, manufacturing or selling tobacco products. Tobacco distributors, manufacturers, and retailers will be required to acquire a license for each location for an initial nonrefundable fee with an annual license renewal fee for a smaller amount. The Tobacco Products Act defines tobacco products as a product made or derived from tobacco or nicotine that is intended for human consumption which includes cigars, cigarettes, chewing tobacco, pipe tobacco, snuff, e-cigarettes or electronic nicotine delivery systems.
The department of public safety will oversee all enforcement activities, including random, unannounced inspections of facilities where tobacco products are sold, manufactured or distributed. The Alcoholic Beverage Control division will have authority over the issuance, denial, suspension, revocation and other administrative penalties. Unless a tobacco distributor, manufacturer or retailer lawfully manufactured, distributed or sold at a location prior to July 1, 2020, a license shall not be granted if the location for the license or license transfer is within three hundred feet of a school. For further information about the Tobacco Products Act, press this link.
Prior to the Tobacco Products Act, New Mexico was one of only 12 states that had yet to pass statewide Tobacco Retail Licensing. In addition, with the new law, New Mexico joins numerous other states that have passed a statewide Tobacco 21 policy. With the infrastructure that statewide tobacco retail licensing creates, enforcement of Tobacco 21 policy in New Mexico will be much better suited for success. The overarching need for tobacco preventive policy has been exacerbated by the e-cigarette epidemic among youth and tobacco product use remaining the leading cause of preventable death in New Mexico.4 In addition, 1 in 6 New Mexico tobacco retail stores sell tobacco products, including e-cigarettes, illegally to minors5.
The No Minor Sale Campaign began in Fall 2017 and has educated community members about and advocated for ending the illegal sale of tobacco products, including e-cigarettes. The campaign has collected over 6,500 handwritten personal messages of support ending the illegal sale of tobacco products to New Mexico youth and/or for statewide tobacco retail licensing from residents of 177 different New Mexico localities and 31 of 33 New Mexico counties. With 63 total No Minor Sale Community Events and 23 total No Minor Sale Presentations that took place in 30 New Mexico cities/towns/pueblos along with 28 community partners from numerous New Mexico organizations and stores, the campaign has educated and gathered support from thousands of New Mexicans. In addition, the campaign has had numerous Evolvement youth advocates speak to state legislators about the importance of statewide tobacco retail licensing and the impact the No Minor Sale Campaign has had in New Mexico.
Although the No Minor Sale Campaign has done a great deal to accomplish its goal of advocating for statewide tobacco retail licensing, which has now been signed into law, the campaign will continue educating New Mexicans about the importance of stopping the illegal sale of tobacco products, including e-cigarettes to New Mexico youth. As such, much work remains to be done. If an organization you are affiliated with is interested in joining the movement to protect our youth from the harmful effects of tobacco and nicotine products, please contact Michael@NoMinorSale.com.
Forster, J et al., “The Effects of Community Policies to Reduce Youth Access to Tobacco,” American Journal of Public Health 88:1193-1198, 1998
Support for the No Minor Sale Campaign has been vast from community members across New Mexico. At events, presentations, and conferences, New Mexicans learn about illegal tobacco product sales to minors from retail stores and share their support for the campaign by completing support cards and volunteering for the campaign. In fact, many retailers are also supportive of the campaign because they care for and understand the issue at hand with illegal tobacco sales to minors in New Mexico and why tobacco retail licensing would be effective in reducing that youth access.
The owner of Oasis Vape, who had 9 Oasis Vape locations across Albuquerque sign onto the No Minor Sale Campaign in May 2019, stated that Oasis Vape shops “support tobacco retail licensing in New Mexico to help narrow the bad players in the industry. That way, the state and the public knows who is selling legally or illegally in the state of New Mexico. Right now, we don’t have the ability to do that, when it comes to tobacco, that [tobacco retail licensing] does not exist.” Furthermore, they also stated that “Oasis Vape operates adult-only (anyone of legal age to purchase tobacco products in New Mexico) facilities to prevent a new generation of youth being exposed to tobacco/nicotine-related products.”
The owner of Stag Tobacconists, who signed on as a retail partner to the No Minor Sale Campaign in December 2019, stated that, “I support tobacco licensing because it would further identify my business as having met all the requirements to become licensed by the state. Requirements, which I assume to include education in youth tobacco sales prevention. The system that NM has right now does little for tobacco businesses in providing information for tobacco business retailers (it takes a lot of unnecessary research to find answers).” They also said, "I felt it was important to sign on to the campaign for a couple of reasons. As a business that's been open for almost 27 years, I want it to be known that we will not sell to minors and the public can trust that their minor children cannot purchase tobacco or vape products, nor can they enter our store. Secondly, there are many stores who do not adhere to this and this has caused issues for all retailers, not just those who break the law."
This issue affects all New Mexicans and we appreciate the efforts made by these retail stores and their owners to self-regulate and ensure their establishments do not sell to minors! Statewide tobacco retail licensing will ensure that all retailers of tobacco products follow the law and those who continue to sell these products to youth will be punished more severely than the weak and inconsistently enforced penalties that are currently in place in New Mexico.
If an organization you are affiliated with is interested in joining the movement to protect our youth from the harmful effects of tobacco, please contact Michael@NoMinorSale.com.
In the month of October, the No Minor Sale campaign built incredible momentum and support throughout the state! In one month, No Minor Sale was at 8 events and 2 partner presentations in 10 different cities. As a whole, the No Minor Sale Campaign collected over 1,100 personal messages of support in the month of October!
Two organizations signed on as partners to the campaign in the month of October. Evolvement students Shayliin Reed presented to the Aztec Boys and Girls Club and Rose Tolentino spoke to Avenues Early Childhood Services in Gallup. Both organizations agreed to sign on as partners in the effort to stop the illegal sale of tobacco to minors in New Mexico.
No Minor Sale has also had quite the presence in numerous community events across the state in October. The 2019 Albuquerque Public School (APS) Health and Wellness Fair on Thursday, October 10th was a resounding success as Evolvement leadership student Amanda Sena, attended the event and helped collect 86 support cards for the campaign! Five different Portales High School Evolvement students took part in the two-day Portales Peanut Festival and accumulated 164 support cards for the No Minor Sale Campaign. In addition, Evolvement leadership staff students, Shayliin Reed and Ian Martinez from Aztec High School and Farmington High School, attended the Farmington Anti-Drug Summit on Friday, October 25th and had a No Minor Sale table while also speaking to hundreds of summit attendees. Lastly, Evolvement leadership student Marcos Martinez, along with four other Evolvement students from Silver City High School in Silver City, helped lead a successful event at the Children’s Fiesta at Penny Park on Saturday, October 26th.
But that’s not to mention the amazing work that Evolvement leadership students, Kaitlyn Romero and Liz Romano in Anthony and Claudia Valenzuela-Rios in Las Cruces, put in to lead No Minor Sale tables at a Gadsden High School Football Senior Night Game on Friday, October 18th and a Trunk or Treat event at Arrowhead Park Early College High School (APECHS) on Tuesday, October 28th, respectively.
No Minor Sale was also represented at an event in Jemez Pueblo on Sunday, October 13th and the New Mexico Youth Summit Event in Santa Fe on Wednesday, October 23rd.
Pictured: Silver City High School Evolvement students (left to right), Haley Perez, Fabre Hernandez, Aaliyah Brannigan, Marcos Martinez and Samantha Thompson at the 2019 Children’s Fiesta in Silver City on Saturday, 10/26/2019.
If an organization you are affiliated with is interested in joining the movement to protect our youth from the harmful effects of tobacco, please contact Michael@NoMinorSale.com.
In New Mexico, about 2,800 people die from tobacco use annually and another 84,000 are living with tobacco-related diseases. Annual smoking-related medical costs in New Mexico total $844 million.1Nationally, combatting cigarette use has been a difficult and long fight for public health advocates. That fight, however, was well rewarded as US cigarette use rates have recently reached historic lows. Unfortunately, this decline in cigarette use has coincided with a massive increase in e-cigarette use, and especially among youth. Youth e-cigarette use has reached epidemic levels across middle and high schools in New Mexico and the US.
Preventing youth access to these tobacco products, which include e-cigarettes, in New Mexico is crucial, given their addictive nature and the burden tobacco causes New Mexican citizens. Luckily, our next generation of Americans are hard at work at continuing to combat the tobacco industry locally by raising awareness about the issue. Former Evolvement member Frankie Gutierrez has done just that and attests, "It's important to have campaigns like No Minor Sale because it's trying to stop illegal tobacco sales to minors and this is a huge issue in New Mexico. Myself, as a minor, have seen tobacco throughout my community and how easy it is for minors to obtain. No Minor Sale is not only helping to keep my community healthy, but it's also protecting all of the youth in New Mexico."
The future is bright with public health advocates such as Frankie Gutierrez and campaigns such as No Minor Sale in reducing the illegal sale of tobacco products to New Mexico youth. Even one sale to a minor is too many. With that, we hope our state’s elected officials will act to stop the illegal sale of tobacco and nicotine products to minors by supporting statewide Tobacco Retail Licensing!
If an organization you are affiliated with is interesting in joining the movement to protect our youth from the harmful effects of tobacco, please contact Michael@NoMinorSale.com.
1 Department of Health (n.d.). Complete Health Indicator Report of Tobacco Use – Adult Smoking Prevalence. Retrieved from https://ibis.health.state.nm.us/indicator/complete_profile/tobaccosmokeadult.html
We are so grateful to the organizations and businesses that support No Minor Sale and want to stop the illegal sale of tobacco products to minors! With the help of local organizations, we can build awareness around the issue of illegal tobacco sales, while protecting our kids from the dangers of tobacco products.
Evolvement students throughout the state are leading the way by presenting to organizations and asking them to sign on as partners of the campaign. Senior, Jenelle Torress from Miyamura High School presented to the Kiwanis Club of Gallup and said, “when the community shows their advocacy through the partnerships made with our No Minor Sale Campaign, it demonstrates the impact that this campaign has made to gain support. The Kiwanis Club of Gallup has been the first organization in Gallup to do exactly that. In partnering with us, they have demonstrated their stance on No Minor Sale, which establishes the guide to other community organizations to join our cause. I feel a sense of gratification when knowing that their support can show others how important our cause is. I am grateful to have been given the opportunity to talk to the Kiwanis Club of Gallup in order to spur the support for No Minor Sale within my community, and hope to gain more support in the future!”
Thank you to all of our partners: NM ACT, Fierce Pride, Keres Consulting, NativeVet Material, St. Anthony Pediatrics, Kiwanis Club of Gallup, Otero County Community Health Council, Nashitti Chapter, Adobe Acres Neighborhood Association, Farmington Public Library, Santa Fe Recovery Center and Mix N’ Mojo Smoke Shop.
If an organization you are affiliated with is interesting in joining the movement to protect our youth from the harmful effects of tobacco, please contact Carlye@NoMinorSale.com.
With the closing of a year and the start of new, we’re
grateful to take time to reflect on the immense progress that we have made on
the No Minor Sale Campaign in 2018. Throughout the year we were on the ground
talking and connecting to local community members about stopping the illegal
sale of tobacco to minors. We have attended events in various communities, held
partner presentations at organizations throughout the state and talked to
thousands of people about protecting youth in New Mexico from the harmful
effects of tobacco and nicotine products.
In 2018 we:
Attended over 26 events throughout the state,
Collected over 1800 personal messages of
Presented to 10 organizations about stopping the
illegal sales of tobacco to youth with XX joining on as partners of the
We are so grateful to have connected to so many people
throughout the state that care about keeping our youth healthy. As we look onto
2019 we know that with your support, this momentum will continue to grow. Our
campaign is powered by community members in New Mexico voicing their concern
about tobacco and nicotine products.
You can help move the campaign forward in 2019 by:
Signing up to volunteer
Connecting the campaign to organizations that
may want to be a partner,
Sharing our the No Minor Sale Facebook page or
posts (Facebook.com/NoMinorSale) or
Talking to the people in your community about
stopping the illegal sale of tobacco to minors!
Join other passionate New Mexicans to protect kids from the illegal tobacco sales!
Even if you only have a few minutes a day, you can make a difference. We provide the training, tools and opportunities you need and you choose how involved to be.
Volunteers educate New Mexicans through personal conversations, community events, and meetings with community leaders. Your role as a volunteer can include collecting messages of support from the community, working at local events, presenting to local organizations, being active on social media and/or writing blog posts. You decide the best way to be involved. The volunteer role is very flexible and can be based on your current schedule.
Volunteers have the opportunity to earn points towards great rewards, like gift cards! With rewards for your efforts, you can guarantee that your hard work won’t go unnoticed AND you can help your community in the process!
We welcome volunteers from anywhere in the state of New Mexico with any schedule! We will help you get involved wherever you live and provide all the necessary training and materials to be effective.
Join us in creating a healthier New Mexico by applying at my.NoMinorSale.com/register
The No Minor Sale campaign has been traveling throughout the state of New Mexico connecting to hundreds of people on the importance of stopping the illegal sale of tobacco to minors. From Silver City, Mescalero, and Truth or Consequences, to Roswell and Tucumcari, we have collected over a thousand personal messages of support from people sharing why they are in favor of stopping the illegal sale of tobacco to minors.
This month, Alexander Lujan and A’Leaya Lucero, two Tucumcari High School students, worked the Fired Up! event. They shared an impactful moment in a post they wrote about the event on the Evolvement website, “it was great to see that we have the community on our side. An older gentlemen stopped by our booth and told us how he started smoking at around the age of eight. He said if he wouldn't have ever started he wouldn't be struggling to stop now in his old age.”
These personal testimonies from across the state are powerful. It is inspiring to see how many people truly care about youth in their communities. We also know concern over e-cigarettes is growing throughout New Mexico. The FDA reports that “more than two million middle and high school students were current users of e-cigarettes in 2017.” With new forms of tobacco products becoming increasingly popular among young people, No Minor Sale is doing its part to combat the epidemic by stopping the illegal sale of ALL tobacco products to minors. As the evolvement youth Alexander Lujan and A’Leaya Lucero from Tucumcari High School stated, “the more people who help, the more people we can reach and in the end the more change we can make.”
1. Wang TW, Gentzke A, Sharapova S, et al. Tobacco Product Use Among Middle and High School Students – United States, 2011-2017. MMWR Morb Mortal Wkly Rep. 2018; 67:629–33. (Original Data Source: NYTS 2017)
Hello, my name is Dannika Maldonado. I am starting my 3rd year as a member of Evolvement. I have participated in 5 events two of them with the 24/7 campaign for tobacco-free schools and 3 No Minor Sale events, sharing information about illegal tobacco sales to minors. I have presented to 2 school boards, Silver and Cobre.
My first event this year was at the Red Hot Children's Fiesta in Silver City. The community was very supportive and I had a couple of people share stories of their loved ones being affected by tobacco from a young age. The Evolvement youth at Silver High School collected 76 messages of support at our event. These messages will be shared with local leaders and decision makers in our community.
I think high school youth should join Evolvement to get involved and attend events because they are really fun and you are helping promote a healthy New Mexico. This event was a community event and they are very different from school events because they are aimed more at the public and you get to meet a variety of people. Youth should be passionate about this issue because their own peers are being affected by big tobacco. This event was a great experience and I am very glad to have had it. I encourage everyone to go to events to have the great, fun experience I had.
The Lifecycle of Commercial Tobacco, Pueblo of Acoma
Ya'at'teeh shikeh doo
shidine'e, Hello my friends and family. My name is Samantha, I am a recent
graduate from Navajo Preparatory School and I’ve been apart of Evolvement
throughout my four years of high school. I started working on No Minor last
year, I was excited about this because it hit home for me. I did many partner
presentations and community events. These presentations about No Minor Sale and
I do it because I grew up watching friends and family members become addicted
tobacco before the age of 18. Which, they either bought it from the store near
by the schools or students asked older people to buy it for them. I don’t want
that type of to be toxic environment I want for my peers, family members,
friends, etc. to be growing up in.
The first step to changing that, was the NMS Partner
Presentation at a Summit, with an eleven-a.m. slot.During this partner presentation we handed
out support cards for the audience to choose whether to write a message in
support of our campaign and we received 17. Throughout the presentation I had
many questions about our campaign and many that we interested. My proudest
moment was to find out that I was asked to present because I am apart of the
tribe and they were proud that I was making a difference within my home
community and in others that allow me to make a change. It meant so much to me,
being considered as a presenter on something that I am passionate about. It
meant that I am being looked up to by many people and I am grateful to be their
For these many reasons stated, I know that activism is
important. It is a jump start for change, it allows people to have a voice that
they may of or may not have had before. It helps key decision makers find out
what the public is pushing for. Interacting with the public at these events and
presentations are important because we can answer any questions that they need
clarification on or maybe they would like more information on how to jump onto
our campaign. All of this to help New Mexico become a healthier place for the
next generations to grow up in. It gives me a reason to keep fighting for their
and my own future by keeping this awareness alive and to keep pushing for
One of the unique features on the home page of the No Minor Sale website is an interactive map. This map allows visitors to choose why they support No Minor Sale and leave a pin on our map based on their zip code. They can select one of our pre-given reasons or choose to write their own reasons. Others who visit the map will be able to hover over anyone’s pin to see their reason for supporting the campaign.
Many people, understandably, support No Minor Sale because, “It’s protecting children.” That’s what our campaign is all about.
But there are also some other heart-felt messages why No Minor Sale matters. Here are some examples:
“Devastating health effects.” – Denise
“Most, if not all, commercial tobacco is poison.” – Abe
“Tobacco affected people I care about.” – Tiffany
“I want to make a difference.” – Kendrick
All of these reasons are valid and appreciated. Tobacco use goes way beyond the user – it affects the user’s family and friends as well.
Why do you support No Minor Sale? We want to know your reason. Put a pin our interactive map and help us continue to spread the message that even one illegal tobacco sale to a minor is too many.
Hello! My name is Lea, and I am sophomore from V. Sue Cleveland High School in Rio Rancho, NM. I have been involved with Evolvement since my freshman year. As an Evolvement advocate, I have been educated on the harmful effects of tobacco, and I have had the opportunity to go into my community to convey the message through different campaign events for both the No Minor Sale campaign and the 24/7 campaign.
One event I participated in was the Fiery Foods Festival at Sandia Resort and Casino in Albuquerque on March 2-4. For this event, Evolvement had a booth set up in the ballroom to inform incoming people about the No Minor Sale campaign. No Minor Sale informs people about illegal tobacco sales to minors under the age of 18, including the many reasons why they are still happening and what we can do to solve the problem. Tobacco use begins at an early age for many, and with the No Minor Sale campaign we can reach out to individuals to terminate this growing epidemic. To enlighten New Mexicans on this negative situation, No Minor Sale conducts surveys to collect data on people’s prior knowledge of and opinions on illegal tobacco sales to minors. It also offers support cards for people who want to share their personal experiences.
Evolvers successfully collected nearly 300 surveys and 22 support cards during the Fiery Foods Festival. During the event, I was able to hear several stories from people about their experiences. This included an emotional account from a young lady who shared her situation of living with a father who smoked, resulting his passing away early. She spoke of her desire to spend more time with him and her wish to have ended his smoking habit. Stories like this this really touch on the reasoning behind wanting to prevent young people from becoming addicted to tobacco products.
Listening to personal testimonies makes it clear as to why campaigns like No Minor Sale are necessary. When attending community events, there are such diverse crowds with a variety of stories to be told. That is reason alone to be passionate about ending tobacco abuse. I believe the misfortune of lives lost due to tobacco can be prevented through this campaign. The youth have the potential to advocate and influence change, and can participate in community events. I have personally taken the opportunity to do so, and I hope to encourage others to become engaged as well.
No Minor Sale has begun Partner Presentations, an exciting educational extension into the community.
Through Partner Presentations, we present a 20-minute program about No Minor Sale to community and civic groups, answer questions, collect support cards, and request the organization to officially sign on as a community partner.
To date, we have presented to two outstanding organizations – The Sunrise Lions Club in Las Cruces and the San Juan Rotary Club in Farmington, which also led to an opportunity for No Minor Sale to speak on Vertical Radio’s (88.9 FM) “Four Corners Spotlight” program. Each experience presenting has been a unique opportunity to get to know New Mexican communities and educate them about the campaign. The feedback from these groups has been overwhelmingly positive.
We are seeking more Partner Presentation opportunities throughout New Mexico.
Do you have a group you think would benefit from learning more about No Minor Sale? If so, we want to come speak to them! Contact Campaign Manager Maria Grundy at firstname.lastname@example.org to learn more.
Thank you, everyone, for supporting No Minor Sale! Since August 2017, No Minor Sale has participated in 12 events in 10 cities throughout New Mexico and has collected over 2,000 surveys and support cards. Now, we are presenting at a variety of family-friendly festivals and celebrations to continue spreading the word.
Some of our events are spearheaded by our committed youth leaders from Evolvement, the Department of Health’s statewide youth-led movement, and others are staffed by engaged members of local communities.
Our event schedule keeps growing, which is exciting as we continue to raise awareness and create urgency around the issue of illegal tobacco sales to minors in our state. Come be a part of the movement of No Minor Sale and visit us at any of the upcoming events!
3/2-4: *30th Annual National Fiery Foods and BBQ Show, Sandia Resort and Casino, Albuquerque
3/10: *Arte y Cantos, La Plazita Institute, Albuquerque
3/16: *13th Annual Health & Wellness Fair, Daniel Fernandez Youth Center, Los Lunas
3/17-18: Mountain Living Home & Garden Show, Ruidoso Convention Center, Ruidoso
3/21: *Partner Presentation, Fierce Pride, LGBTQ Center at UNM, Albuquerque (TENTATIVE)
Do you have a New Year’s resolution? For No Minor Sale, it’s simple: get everyone in New Mexico excited to keep kids safe from tobacco by ending illegal tobacco sales to minors. Not sure if that’s for you? Check out some of the reasons people support the campaign from across the state:
“I support No Minor Sale because I started smoking at 13 because it’s really easy to get tobacco at some of the stores here.” - Sophomore, New Mexico Public Schools
“I am a 20 year smoker, I began smoking at the age of 14. I cannot say whether this was the gateway to addiction for me in my life, but eventually I had a drug and alcohol addiction. Although I am drug and alcohol free now, I still have not been able to quit smoking.” - Blake, Anthony
“My dad started chewing tobacco and smoking when he was 16…and already has early signs of lung cancer. I don’t want to see other kids wind up like my dad…I want today’s generation to make it past 60 to live a healthy life and not let tobacco take control of their life.” - Katy, Las Cruces
“No student should be able to get tobacco as they have enough to do in their lives!” - Don, Albuquerque
What’s your reason for supporting No Minor Sale? Share it on ourinteractive map, and let people on your social networks know how important this issue is to New Mexico.
You might be wondering why No Minor Sale is focusing on the dangers of illegal tobacco sales to minors, when it is already illegal to sell tobacco to youth under age 18. Unfortunately, there are many reasons why illegal sales are still happening:
Reason #1: Retailers don’t know there is a problem.More education is needed to explain evolving tobacco regulations, the impact of underage tobacco sales, and how retailers can help prevent illegal transactions at their stores.
Reason #2: There is limited incentive to make following this law a priority.Right now, retailers only receive a compliance check 1-2 times per year. When stores are caught selling to minors, the penalties are inconsistent and often weak.
Reason #3: New Mexico laws are out of date.For instance, New Mexico is one of only 13 states that does not require a license to sell tobacco. Tobacco retail licensing is a proven way to reduce youth access to tobacco products. Rule-breakers lose their license, which provides a strong incentive for businesses to follow the law.
Reason #4: We don’t know where tobacco is being sold.Retailers go in and out of business frequently, and our state does not require tobacco retailers to register or obtain tobacco licensing. If we don’t know where tobacco is being sold, it is difficult to enforce the law.
The Pecan Festival in Mesilla on October 21-22, 2017 was the fifth event for No Minor Sale, and it was organized by Charlotte Stalker, a local youth from Las Cruces. Charlotte is a member of Evolvement, a statewide youth movement sponsored by the Department of Health that works on public health campaigns including No Minor Sale. In total, six Evolvement students from Arrowhead Park Early College worked the two-day event.
The students spent the event speaking to and collecting surveys and messages of support from 150 people. By informing New Mexicans about the dangers of illegal tobacco sales to minors, the students incited a greater urgency in the public about the issue. “I support ending illegal tobacco sales to minors because it isn’t fair to all the young lives that become ruined,” said Evolver Fareeda who worked the event. With 90% of tobacco users starting before the age of 18, this lifetime of addiction should not be the result of a choice made too easy as a teen.
Evolvement is one group that is truly making a difference and spreading the word about illegal tobacco sales to minors in New Mexico. Does your group want to get involved in your community?Click Hereand let us know!
My name is Jaedan Marquez. I am currently in my junior year at Arrowhead Park Early College High School and I've been a member of Evolvement since my freshmen year. This year I have worked on the No Minor Sale campaign at the Diez y Seis de Septiembre Fiesta in Mesilla, NM and also presented this campaign to the Sunrise Loins Club in Las Cruces, New Mexico. The reason I have taken the initiative to participate in these events is because I have two nieces and one more on the way. I want them to grow up in an environment where underage smoking is nonexistent and not another thing, that is bad for them that they could get introduced to.
On January 25th, my partner, Chriss Wright and I, presented the first ever No Minor Sales partner presentation to the Sunrise Lions Club of Las Cruces. During this event we collected a total of nine support cards. The members of the Lions Club were very intrigued by what we were saying and presented us with many questions about what our group is doing to educate our peers. It was inspiring to hear their stories of how they got into tobacco and the pop culture surrounding it when they were our age and how they don’t want the same influence on today’s youth. Meeting with the Sunrise Lions Club of Las Cruces was a wonderful experience for Chriss and I. These and other events are experiences that we hope to continue to encounter in the future.
If we unite as a community, we can educate the general populous about the negative effects of tobacco sales to minors. By reaching out to the community, at local events, we are able to educate and be the face of the No Minor Sale campaign. I look forward to new events to continue to create urgency to end illegal tobacco sales to minors.
My name is Charlotte Stalker from Las Cruces and I am currently a member of the Evolvement New Mexico Leadership Team. This is my second year on the leadership team, which means I’ve gotten to organize and work events for both the 24/7 and No Minor Sale campaigns.
September 16-17th, 2017 was the Diez y Seis de Septiembre Fiesta, in Mesilla, NM, which I organized as an Evolvement Leadership Team member. We set up a booth with a plinko board to draw people to the table, in addition to walking around the festival asking people to fill out the survey for No Minor Sale. We collected over 200 hundred surveys in addition to 15 support cards, which give people the chance to write a personal message about why they want to end illegal tobacco sales to youth. We had interactions with a lot of shop owners who whole-heartedly supported our cause, which was really great because they’re the people we want to ally with.
Getting the chance to talk with community members outside of my school is a completely new experience for me. We get to have meaningful conversations with people who are genuinely interested in the issue and can help make changes about issues they’re passionate about. Talking to community members not only can help boost self-confidence and speaking skills, but it also provides a unique opportunity to speak on an issue you’re passionate about, such as underage tobacco use.
On September 3rd-4th, 2017, the No Minor Sale campaign participated in the 46th Annual Hatch Chile Festival in Hatch, NM. The Chile Fest attracts not only New Mexicans, but also people from neighboring states such as Arizona, Colorado, and Texas, as well as California.
Along with two local volunteers, Andrea and David, we were able to speak to over 100 people at this event about the importance of ending illegal tobacco sales to minors. People were very receptive and engaging. Phillip, a resident of Albuquerque drove down to celebrate Hatch-grown chiles and visit the vendor booths. “Tobacco is a very addictive and harmful substance,” claimed Phillip. “It has no business in the hands of minors.”
Community events are a great way for the campaign to make a big impact in every locality in New Mexico. We have many events scheduled throughout the year, and we want to come to your town! Click here to bring No Minor Sale to your community.
In New Mexico last year, 1 of 6 retailers sold tobacco products to minors
90% of tobacco users start before age 18.
Every year, 1,000 youth in New Mexico become new daily smokers
Tobacco use remains the leading cause of preventable death and disease in New Mexico - about 2,630 New Mexicans die each year from tobacco-related illness
Shocking facts, huh? Think the youth of today are no longer into tobacco products? The stats above show that’s simply not true. So what can be done about it?
Welcome to the No Minor Sale campaign, where when it comes to tobacco products, even one sale to underage youth is too many.
No Minor Sale is an educational, community campaign working to end illegal tobacco sales to minors in New Mexico. Within this campaign, we will be presenting at community events across the state and collecting support from New Mexicans about why they care about protecting youth from tobacco abuse. We are also partnering with parents and community members across the state who are retailers and want to protect kids from using tobacco.
For more information, check out theresourcesand add your voice to ourinteractive map.You can also stop by our booth at the Macaroni and Cheese Festival in Albuquerque on August 19th to share your message of support.