The Importance of Nicotine Flavor Restriction and Community Support
Hello my name is Jadyn and I go to Artesia High School. This is my second year in Evolvement and my first year in the leadership team. Evolvement is a youth-led organization. There are two main campaigns that Evolvement works on: 24/7 which aims to make every NM school 100% tobacco-free and No Minor Sale which aims to end the sale of nicotine and tobacco products to minors.
Flavored tobacco products are dangerous because they are highly addictive and very enticing to youth. Flavored tobacco products make vaping fun by having flavors like cotton candy, mango, grape, Piña Colada and Captain Crunch. All these flavors entice kids to try e-cigarettes because it tastes good instead of just having flavorless air. Studies have shown that 80% of youth who’ve used tobacco products started with a flavored product.
Since being in Evolvement, I’ve done two No Minor Sale partner presentations as well as a blog about my two presentations. My first presentation was in person to the Lions Club of Artesia which was a great experience. All the adults I presented to were very interested in the information I was telling them. Most of them didn’t know how big of an issue the sale of tobacco and nicotine products to minors really was. My second presentation took place via zoom to the Changing Lives Coalition, an organization aimed at helping kids. Like with my first presentation, the Changing Lives Coalition was also very interested in learning more about the sale of tobacco and nicotine products to minors. At the end of my presentation, they signed on to be a partner with No Minor Sale which is a huge win in my book!
Others need to know about ending the illegal sale to minors because it has become a growing issue. In 2019, 34% of New Mexico high school youth reported current use of e-cigarettes, which was the 3rd highest rate among U.S. states. The illegal sale to minors is not going to stop unless we as a community help to put restrictions in place. No Minor Sale is so important to me because I’ve seen the effects flavored tobacco products and tobacco products in general have on youth and how addictive it can be to youth. I also want to see change in the sale of tobacco and nicotine to minors to help youth avoid the devastating end of tobacco use.