Akron boosts age to buy tobacco products from 18 to 21

AKRON, OH (WOIO) - Nearly 300 cities and counties across the country have told teens they will have to wait until they are 21 to legally buy cigarettes.

Akron is the latest.

"I agree with it. I think it will lower the amount smoking younger people do.  It, in turn will have health benefits later on," Stephanie Rogers said.

Rogers doesn't smoke, she's actually going to school for respiratory therapy.

She applauds council members for their vote.

"If they want it, they are going to get it," said former smoker Judy Horn.

Horn started smoking in college; she has since quit.

She doesn't think the law would have made a difference for her.

Akron council member Marilyn Keith wrote a letter to council against the ordinance saying in part, "At the age of 18 many adult consequences and responsibilities are granted to them: marriage, driving a car, enlisting in the military, HIPAA applies, buying a home, voting, acquiring college debt."

Most people we spoke with agree with the new ordinance.

"With raising the age limit it could decrease the smoking for younger kids," said Anthony Salter, a non-smoker.

"With the age going up, less people are going to smoke until later," said Nicholas Kinkeade, a non-smoker.

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