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Credit cig taxes for decline in teen smoking

Date published: 1/27/2013

Credit cig taxes for decline in teen smoking

Thank you for your Jan. 22 editorial highlighting the dramatic reduction in teen smoking in Virginia ["Kids and smokes"]. You are right to attribute this very positive trend to health education initiatives fostered by the Virginia Foundation for Healthy Youth, and to reductions in tobacco advertising targeted to teens.

One more significant factor is noted by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention: higher cigarette prices brought about by increases in federal cigarette taxes. Policy research shows a direct connection between higher prices and reduced teen smoking rates. This is a very positive public health outcome and a promising sign that Virginia's population will enjoy a healthier future.

John Morgan


John Morgan is executive director, Voices for Virginia's Children.