Saturday, July 2, 2022

Play

The U.S. Supreme Court strips the EPA's power to curb pollution, California takes a big step toward universal health care, and a Florida judge will temporarily block the state's 15-week abortion ban.

Play

SCOTUS significantly limits the Clean Air Act and rules against the "Stay in Mexico" policy, Judge Ketanji Brown Jackson is sworn in to office, and President Biden endorses a filibuster carveout for abortion rights.

Play

From flying saucers to bologna: America's summer festivals kick off, rural hospitals warn they do not have the necessities to respond in the post-Roe scramble, advocates work to counter voter suppression, and campaigns encourage midterm voting in Indian Country.

MN House Panel Advances Flavored Tobacco Ban

Play

Thursday, February 18, 2021   

ST. PAUL, Minn. -- A proposal to ban the sale of all flavored tobacco products in Minnesota has resurfaced in the Legislature.

House Bill 904, which cleared a House committee Wednesday, comes with renewed backing of those wanting to address health disparities across the state.

The measure would prohibit retailers from selling flavored tobacco and related products, including menthol cigarettes.

Rep. Cedrick Frazier, DFL-New Hope, the bill's sponsor, said now is the time to restrict items that have been heavily marketed in communities of color.

"Let's put the health of our kids and the health of our Black brothers and sisters ahead of Big Tobacco profits," Frazier urged.

Supporters also said the move would address the dangers of vaping among teens and young adults.

At this week's hearing, there was opposition from those representing retailers, who say the ban would push buyers into other states while creating a dangerous underground market.

Laura Smith, spokesperson for the nonprofit group ClearWay Minnesota and Minnesotans for a Smoke Free Generation, countered in light of last year's racial reckoning and the pandemic, there's more urgency to address health disparities facing marginalized communities, and reducing tobacco dependency would be a big help.

"We think that should be a huge impetus for getting this done this session," Smith asserted.

Late last year, the Minnesota House Select Committee on Racial Justice recommended action as part of a broader effort to eliminate disparities.

Meanwhile, more than a dozen Minnesota cities have enacted their own restrictions for selling flavored tobacco.


get more stories like this via email

While most classrooms are empty right now, lingering concerns from the previous school year, such as the pandemic's effect on students and staff, are being dissected ahead of next year. (Adobe Stock)

Social Issues

Research is emerging about the secondary trauma school staff members face after helping students during the pandemic. As summer moves forward…


Health and Wellness

A Florida judge plans to put a hold on the state's new, 15-week abortion ban, set to take effect today. He said it is unconstitutional and will issue …

Environment

The Environmental Protection Agency now has fewer tools to fight climate change, after the U.S. Supreme Court stripped the agency of its authority to …


The only memorial to Anne Frank is located in Boise. (Kencf0618/Wikimedia Commons)

Social Issues

Three projects in Idaho have been selected to receive grants from the AARP Community Challenge. Among them is the Anne Frank Human Rights Memorial in …

Environment

Montanans get a sense of what soil health is like on farms and ranches across the state with Northern Plains Resource Council's soil crawls. The …

Medicare fraud costs taxpayers an estimated $60 billion each year. (Adobe Stock)

Social Issues

A new tool aims to help older adults in Arkansas and beyond who receive Medicare track what happens at their doctor appointments. It also can help …

Social Issues

A campaign in Maine is gathering signatures to replace the state's investor-owned energy grid with a consumer-owned utility. Central Maine Power (…

Social Issues

Another important U.S. Supreme Court ruling this month has been overshadowed by the controversy about overturning abortion rights. Legal experts say …

 

Phone: 303.448.9105 Toll Free: 888.891.9416 Fax: 208.247.1830 Your trusted member- and audience-supported news source since 1996 Copyright © 2021