Illinois Town Considers Raising Tobacco Buying Age

An Evanston council subcommittee recommended bumping up the age to 21.

October 08, 2014

EVANSTON, Ill. – Evanston, Illinois, is poised to join communities in New York, Massachusetts and Hawaii in raising the legal tobacco buying age to 21, the Daily Northwestern reports. The city’s Human Resources Committee voted unanimously to recommend such a move to the City Council, which is likely to approve the change.

If passed, the age of sale, possession and purchase of liquid nicotine or tobacco products within city limits will be increased to 21. “As a parent of two Evanston residents who are of voting age, 18 and 20 years old, I have no regret about taking away their right to buy cigarettes in Evanston,” Alderman Jane Grover told the publication.

Dr. Timothy Sanborn of the Evanston Health Advisory Council briefed the committee on the possible outcome of such a move. His testimony included data that pointed to the fact that no retailers in the 33 Massachusetts localities with a 21 age restriction closed shop because of the change.

Evanston became one of the first areas in Illinois to enact a smoking ban and would be the first locality to bump up the tobacco buying age.