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FDA Asks Public to Join Battle Against Smoking by Children
Reporting tobacco law violations helps keep cigarettes out of kids' hands, agency says

By Robert Preidt

WEDNESDAY, May 14, 2014 (HealthDay News) -- The U.S. Food and Drug Administration wants your help in keeping children away from tobacco.

Every day, more than 3,200 Americans under the age of 18 smoke their first cigarette, and more than 700 become daily smokers, according to the agency.

Complaints from members of the public about potential violations of federal laws that forbid the sale of tobacco to anyone younger than 18 can help reduce the number of young people who try cigarettes or become smokers, the FDA said.

Of more than 18,000 tobacco law violations between 2009 and Sept. 30, 2013, more than half were for selling tobacco products to minors, and more than a third were for failure to ask for proper photo ID to confirm the age of a person buying tobacco products, according to the FDA Center for Tobacco Products.

There are several ways you can report a possible violation of federal tobacco laws. You can call file a complaint online, call 1-877-287-1373, or download and mail a form to the FDA Center for Tobacco Products.

Potential violations include: sales of cigarettes or smokeless tobacco to minors; sales of flavored cigarettes or flavored cigarette tobacco (except menthol) to minors; providing free samples of cigarettes to minors; sales of single cigarettes to minors, and providing free samples of smokeless tobacco to minors, unless in a "qualified adult-only facility."

You should provide as much information as possible when reporting a possible violation. This includes the date, location, product type, product brand and/or type of violation, the FDA said.

The length of time it takes to complete an investigation varies, depending on a number of factors. Information about a case can't be made public until the case is closed.

Businesses typically received a warning letter for first-time violations, but repeat offenders can face fines, seizures, injunctions or criminal prosecution, the FDA said.

More information

The FDA tells you how to report potential tobacco product law violations.

SOURCE: U.S. Food and Drug Administration, news release, May 9, 2014

Copyright © 2014 HealthDay. All rights reserved. URL:http://consumer.healthday.com/Article.asp?AID=687762

Resources from HONselect: HONselect is the HON's medical search engine. It retrieves scientific articles, images, conferences and web sites on the selected subject.
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Disclaimer: The text presented on this page is not a substitute for professional medical advice. It is for your information only and may not represent your true individual medical situation. Do not hesitate to consult your healthcare provider if you have any questions or concerns. Do not use this information to diagnose or treat a health problem or disease without consulting a qualified healthcare professional.
Be advised that HealthDay articles are derived from various sources and may not reflect your own country regulations. The Health On the Net Foundation does not endorse opinions, products, or services that may appear in HealthDay articles.


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