Governor Greg Abbott of Texas has signed a law raising the age to buy tobacco products — including cigarettes and e-cigarettes — to twenty-one.
The one exception to the law, which goes into effect in September, is an exemption for people in the armed forces, CNN reported.
“Delaying the age when young people first begin to use tobacco — the leading cause of preventable death — will reduce the risk they will develop a deadly addiction,” Shelby Massey with the American Heart Association told CNN affiliate KXAN-TV.
Texas is the latest state to raise the age to buy tobacco to twenty-one. Other states include Illinois, Hawaii, California, New Jersey, Oregon, Maine and Massachusetts, and laws will take effect this year in Arkansas and Virginia.
Advocates of raising the age to purchase tobacco products also hope to stem the increase of e-cigarette use among teens.
“The skyrocketing growth of young people’s e-cigarette use over the past year threatens to erase progress made in reducing youth tobacco use. It’s putting a new generation at risk for nicotine addiction,” CDC director Robert Redfield, told CNN+.