Government “turning a blind eye” to illegal tobacco…again

For Immediate Release
April 1, 2014

Queen’s Park – Under the guise of protecting young people, the Ontario government is once again taking aim at the legal tobacco industry and corner stores.

Haldimand-Norfolk MPP Toby Barrett said the Youth Smoking Prevention Act, will do next to nothing to stop young people from lighting up because it fails to address illegal tobacco.

“I would suggest this government consider banning the sale of tobacco by organized crime to young people,” Barrett told members of the House. “Young people are price sensitive. Why pay $80 for a carton when you can pay $8. You can get rollies. They’re in a plastic bag, 200, 220 cigarettes.”

The legislation will also see a ban on the sale of flavoured tobacco products. Barrett pointed out that according to Health Canada, 94 per cent of the market for flavoured cigar products, for example, is legal-age driven with the majority of consumers over the age of 25.

“…flavoured tobacco is not the issue here; it’s illegal tobacco, and it’s disgusting what this government has allowed to happen over the last 11 years,” Barrett charged.

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For more information contact MPP Toby Barrett at 519-428-0446, 905-765-8413 or 1-800-903-8629