Statement by Dr. Terry Brooks, executive director of Kentucky Youth Advocates
Kentucky is one step closer to making a profound and positive difference for kids’ health with the House’s passage of House Bill 11, championed by Representative Kim Moser. Currently, only 42 percent of Kentucky public school districts have adopted tobacco-free policies. And all of our students deserve to learn and grow in a healthy school environment.
The peak years for first trying tobacco products, including e-cigarettes, are 6th and 7th grades; these are young kids who are getting hooked on the nicotine in these products. Prohibiting tobacco use creates an environment where smoking cigarettes and e-cigs is not the norm, reduces teen tobacco use, and provides positive adult role modeling. And a comprehensive tobacco-free campus policy that expands across the state – as proposed by House Bill 11 – can help prevent students from ever risking addiction and protect all students, faculty, staff, and visitors from the harms of secondhand exposure to smoke, aerosol, and residue.
We applaud Chairwoman Moser for her leadership. And we thank the Kentucky House for prioritizing the health of Kentucky kids. We now look to the Senate for their support of this measure in the final days of the 2019 legislative session.
Stay up-to-date on Blueprint for Kentucky’s Children priorities and other bills that are good for kids on our Kentucky General Assembly Bill Tracker.
About Kentucky Youth Advocates
Kentucky Youth Advocates believes all children deserve to be safe, healthy, and secure. As THE independent voice for Kentucky’s children, we work to ensure policymakers create investments and policies that are good for children. Learn more at www.kyyouth.org.