In New Jersey there was proposed to increase age to buy cigarettes to 21. According to experts, the anti-smoking initiatives to prohibit smoking in public places first appeared more than 30 years ago, when numerous researchers came with a negative opinions about smoking. Today anti-smoking fight has a great success locally in cities and counties, and gradually will have success on the state level.
Up to date there is no state in the USA which prohibits buying cigarettes to those under 21, and New Jersey may become the first one having such a law on state level. Thus a law which prohibits sale of cigarettes to those under 21 was passed in the Senate in June 2014 and now is awaiting a hearing in the state Assembly in upcoming fall.
Senator Richard Codey previously was New Jersey governor and he prohibited smoking in certain public places and increased the legal age to 19. He believes the new anti-smoking intitiative will pass without any problem.
New Jersey Governor Chris Christie said nothing about his intentions. The law depends on his signature. In case it passes, the entire state of New Jersey would join New York City, which already increased cigarettes buying age to 21 in 2013.
First city in the USA that raised smoking age to 21 is Needham, Massachussetts, back in 2005. Since then was observed significant drop in number of smokers.
Smoking age increase is proved to be an effective measure to fight smoking because most smokers (95%) start their habit and become regular smokers before 21. These people face difficulties with quitting after long term smoking. The earlier man starts smoking, the easier he becomes addicted.
Some American states and localities raised smoking age to 19. These are Alaska, Utah, Alabama, New Jersey. However, Utah refused to increase the age to 21 as the opponents were extremely active and put forward a forceful arguments against the law.