Braintree, Mass. is exploring changes its tobacco buying age limits, specifically whether the town should raise the minimum age to purchase tobacco to 19 years of age. According to an article from The Patriot Ledger, the town’s health board will likely vote on the proposal after the town’s attorney reviews the proposal.
While New York City is the most notable city to raise the minimum purchasing age to 21, Massachusetts is likely to be most intense battleground. Dr. Lester Hartman, a Massachusetts-based pediatrician, has stated he will campaign across the state for the age to be raised to 21, something he’s already has success doing.
Hartman’s hometown, Needham, raised the age to 21 in 2005. Recently, Arlington, Canton, Dover and Sharon have all raised the age to 21. The minimum age has been raised to 19 in Arlington, Belmont, Brookline, Watertown, and Walpole.
There have been a few defeats. Earlier this month, Hopkinton, Mass. rejected an age increase to 21.
Braintree is part of the greater Boston area, less than 15 miles south of Boston with a population estimated around 35,000.