HONOLULU – July 02, 2015 – The Department of Health’s Hawai‘i Tobacco Quitline applauds Governor Ige for signing Senate Bill 1030 on June 19th, making Hawai‘i the first state in the nation to prohibit the sale of tobacco products, including e-cigarettes, to anyone under 21 years of age.

“Research has found that 95 percent of adult smokers began smoking before they turned 21. By further restricting access to tobacco products, Governor Ige and members of the state legislature are demonstrating bold leadership to reduce tobacco use among young adults, before they become addicted,” said Lola H. Irvin, Manager of the Chronic Disease Prevention and Health Promotion Division at the Hawai‘i Department of Health.

“We commend the state legislature and Governor Ige for supporting this monumental legislation that puts Hawaii at the forefront of protecting the health of young adults. This is another important step toward a smoke-free Hawai‘i.”

Preventing people from ever trying tobacco is ideal, but for those who already use tobacco products, the Hawai‘i Tobacco Quitline offers free nicotine replacement products and counseling. Research has shown that smokers who use the Quitline are up to 14 times more likely to quit than those who quit on their own.

Each year in Hawai‘i, nearly 1,400 adults 35 and over die from smoking-caused diseases and illness. The toll of tobacco use in Hawai‘i continues to be felt by everyone, but policy changes like those announced last month – along with ground-breaking partnerships that allow for more information and tools to be put into the hands of the smokers who need the services most – can prevent tobacco use and help ensure the health of future generations.

To join the over 22,000 Hawai‘i residents who have successfully quit smoking using the Hawai‘i Tobacco Quitline, call 1-800-QUIT-NOW, or visit www.hawaiiquitline.org for your FREE personalized quit plan, FREE nicotine replacement patches or gum, and to gain access to interactive tracking tools and educational materials available 24/7.

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1. Calculated based on data in the National Survey on Drug Use and Health, 2013, http://www.icpsr.umich.edu/icpsrweb/SAMHDA/.

2. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Best Practices for Comprehensive Tobacco Control Programs – 2014. Atlanta: U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, National Center for Chronic Disease Prevention and Health Promotion, Office on Smoking and Health, 2014.

About the Hawai‘i Tobacco Quitline and the Hawai‘i Tobacco Prevention and Control Trust Fund
The Hawai‘i Tobacco Quitline is funded by the Hawai‘i Tobacco Prevention and Control Trust Fund. The trust fund’s dollars represent a portion of Hawai‘i’s Master Settlement Agreement payments resulting from a joint lawsuit against the four biggest U.S. tobacco companies to recover healthcare costs for treatment of tobacco-related illnesses paid for by taxpayers, the Hawai‘i Tobacco Prevention and Control Trust Fund provides resources for community organizations to create and maintain a Hawai‘i that is free from tobacco use, addiction and exposure to secondhand smoke.