For Immediate Release
Thursday, March 28, 2019
Contact: John Guilfoil
Wrentham Board of Health Votes to Restrict Sales of Flavored Tobacco Products
WRENTHAM — Town Administrator Kevin Sweet and King Philip Regional School District Superintendent Paul Zinni are pleased to share that the Wrentham Board of Health voted to restrict the sale of flavored tobacco products in town last week.
The board unanimously approved the restriction on Thursday, March 21. Although the sale of flavored tobacco products will be restricted, menthol and mint flavors will still be permitted. The restriction takes effect August 1.
“It is essential that we take the steps we have available to us as a town to protect our youth from these harmful, addictive substances,” Town Administrator Kevin Sweet said. “I wholly approve of the Board of Health’s decision, and am thankful our town will be removing these products from the shelves of our local businesses.”
Danielle Berry, a member of Healthy KP, spearheaded the effort to restrict flavored tobacco products, specifically with e-cigarettes and vape products in mind, after she read about a similar initiative in Foxborough. She contacted the Wrentham Board of Health to see what could be done, which spurred the board to consider a restriction. Healthy KP is a community coalition formed by the King Philip Regional School District that seeks to prevent the use of alcohol, drugs and tobacco among students. The coalition was launched this past fall.
“Healthy KP supports the move to restrict flavored tobacco products 100 percent,” said Kip Lewis, a member of Healthy KP and assistant principal at King Philip Regional High School. “The youth of the Wrentham and the Tri-Town area will have a chance to live healthier lives with this new restriction.”
In a 2016 MetroWest health survey, which was completed by 24,385 anonymous high school students throughout the region, 25 percent of King Philip High School students acknowledged they had vaped or used e-cigarettes.
“Just like high schools across the Commonwealth, we’re seeing firsthand at King Philip that students are using these devices,” Superintendent Zinni said. “It is our hope this restriction will limit access to the flavored tobacco products that often target teens, and dissuade students from trying these products at all.”
The National Institute on Drug Abuse announced in December that approximately 37 percent of high school seniors reported vaping in 2018.