Mayor Michael Bloomberg called for legislation to make New York the first U.S. city to require stores to conceal tobacco products, a week after a court struck down his ban on the sale of large sugary beverages.
His latest health initiative, which would mandate that tobacco products such as cigarettes be kept in cabinets, drawers, under the counter, behind a curtain or in any other concealed location, is designed to reduce the city’s smoking rate. It wouldn’t affect advertising for sellers.
The measure is scheduled to be introduced at the mayor’s request by Democratic City Council member Maria del Carmen Arroyo, chairwoman of the Health Committee, on March 20, according to a statement. A companion bill seeks to combat illegal cigarette smuggling.
“New York City has dramatically lowered our smoking rate, but even one new smoker is one too many,” Bloomberg said at a press briefing today at a Queens hospital, according to a statement. “Young people are targets of marketing, and the availability of cigarettes and this legislation will help prevent another generation from the ill health and shorter life expectancy that comes with smoking.”
Bloomberg, 71, who is in his final year in office, last month used his last State of the City address to announce measures aimed at boosting the city’s recycling rate and use of electric vehicles, a curbside food-composting pilot program and a ban on plastic-foam packaging.
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