IL bill would increase smoking age to 21

IL bill would increase smoking age to 21

HERRIN, IL (KFVS) - A proposal by Ill. Sen. John Mulroe, is looking to increase the smoking age from 18 to 21.

This would include purchasing cigarettes and other tobacco products, including electronic cigarettes.

The bill is SB 3011, where Mulroe is calling it Tobacco21.

"It's very costly, not only to the person but to our state," Mulroe said in a press conference Thursday. "To our state both privately and publicly, we spend related healthcare costs directly related to smoking in the state, over five billion dollars for illnesses related to smoking. Our state alone, Medicaid dollars, that go towards healthcare costs related to smoking are nearly two billion dollars."

According to the American Academy of Pediatrics, it states children and teenagers who start smoking before the age of 21, are far more likely to become established adult smokers.

With many views on both sides of the table, it's question as to whether or not this will pass.

"Studies have shown that increasing the age of 18 to 21 will reduce the amount of teenage smoking," Mulroe said. "Studies have also shown if you do not smoking by the age of 21, chances are very good that you will never start smoking."

For more information on the bill, click here.

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