Government Reports Success In Minors Smoking Prevention Plan

October 5, 2007

The government is reporting success with a program aimed at discouraging minors from smoking.

The latest figures show the percentage of retailers selling tobacco to underage young people during unannounced inspections dropped to 10.9% last year. That's the lowest rate since states started conducting the stings a decade ago.

A 1992 youth smoking law requires states to ban tobacco sales to anyone under age 18. It calls for aggressive enforcement including random inspections using decoy buyers at grocery stores and other
retailers.

States have to report the results to the Health and Human Services Department. Arkansas had the lowest violation rate. Kansas had the highest. And, for the first time in the program's history, every state had a violation rate of less than 20%.


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