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This US City Just Instituted a Ban on Tobacco Products

Last week, the Beverly Hills City Council unanimously approved an ordinance prohibiting the sale of the vast majority of tobacco products. The ban is the first of its kind in the United States and is expected to go into effect January 1, 2021. Following public input as well as recommendations from the city’s Health and Safety Commission, the ban includes cigarettes, cigars, dissolvable products, electronic cigarettes, chewing tobacco and water pipes.

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Gas stations, pharmacies and convenient stores will all be affected by the ban, along with all other tobacco retailers in the city. However, some establishments will be exempted — a total of 28 to be exact. The 28 establishments in Beverly Hills that have permits to sell tobacco products — three of which are cigar lounges — will continue to be able to sell tobacco products to guests.

Although exempted, several of these businesses have protested the ordinance with concerns of loss of revenue. In response, the Beverly Hills City Council said it will review tourism in three years to determine whether or not the ban has had an impact. The City Council also said it believes the public health benefits of the tobacco ban outweigh the possible loss in business profits.

While it may seem like the city has made a quick jump from all to nothing, Beverly Hills has been cracking down on tobacco for quite some time. The city had already instituted strict regulations on where people are allowed to smoke.

Of course, it’s likely that tobacco-using Beverly Hills residents will simply drive to nearby cities to purchase tobacco products. But there may be a small chance that the new law will encourage tobacco users to stop altogether — which would be the best outcome. It’s no secret that tobacco products destroy your body from the inside out. The tobacco industry’s newest invention — e-cigarettes — are enticing teens and young adults to get hooked on nicotine at a younger age than ever before, causing health problems to begin early on.

If you use tobacco, you’re at a higher risk of depression, anxiety, stroke, heart attack, heart disease, lung disease and cancer, among other illnesses. You’re also regularly exposing yourself to dangerous chemicals and toxic heavy metals with each puff. If you prefer smokeless tobacco, you’re far from off the hook. Chewing tobacco causes around 250,000 deaths per year and is associated with mouth, tongue, cheek, gum, throat, stomach and esophageal cancer, on top of other health conditions.

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