Ann Arbor changes tobacco purchase age

117This week the Ann Arbor city council passed an ordinance to raise the legal age to purchase tobacco from 18 to 21.

Josh Meyerson is the Medical Director for the Health Department of Northwest Michigan. He supports the move.

He said the ordinance will help to reduce the age people are introduced to smoking.

“95 percent of smokers start smoking in their teenage years.So if we can reduce that amount and you know, laws wont elminate it. They won’t magically stop using it but if we can significantly reduce the amount of youth who start using tobacco at that age we can really impact the use.”

Meyerson said Ann Arbor is the first city to raise the minimum purchase age in Michigan.He says hundreds of other cities, and some states, like Hawaii, Illinois and Cleveland have similar ordinances.