Walmart raises age to buy cigarettes, e-cigs to 21 years old - WFMJ.com News weather sports for Youngstown-Warren Ohio

Walmart raises age to buy cigarettes, e-cigs to 21 years old

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Amidst a growing push to raise the tobacco-purchasing age to 21 a leading retailer is joining the movement. 

National-retailer Walmart announced Thursday that it will raise the minimum age to purchase cigarettes, e-cigarettes, and other nicotine products to 21-years-old in all of its stores. 

A statement from the company says that as of July 1st, 2019 all Walmart and Sam's Club locations will raise the minimum age. 

In addition, the company says they are "in the process of discontinuing the sale of fruit- and dessert-flavored electronic nicotine delivery systems." 

According to John Scudder, U.S. Chief Compliance and Ethics Officer, Walmart Inc., in 2018, Walmart stores were 94% compliant in more than 2,400 federal checks of compliance checks involving minors purchasing tobacco products. Sam's Club locations were 100% effective in 15 federal checks. 

The letter from Scudder says that in addition to raising the purchasing age, the stores will implement new disciplinary protocol as well as introduce virtual-reality training experiences for employees. 

Walmart joins the growing number of communities, companies, and states raising the minimum tobacco-buying age to 21-years-old. 

Earlier this month, Walgreens announced their intent to take similar measures. Locally, Youngstown, Warren, and several other communities have considered similar policies. 

The full letter from Walmart can be read here:

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