NAACP released the following statement following reports of the Food and Drug Administration’s proposal to ban menthol cigarettes:
“The NAACP is pleased to hear of the Food and Drug Administration’s (FDA) plan to ban the sale of menthol cigarettes and restrict the sale of flavored e-cigarettes. For decades, data have shown that the tobacco industry has successfully and intentionally marketed mentholated cigarettes to African Americans and particularly African American women as “replacement smokers;” that menthol smokers have a harder time quitting smoking; and that tobacco use is a major contributor to heart disease, cancer, and stroke – three leading causes of death among African Americans. The recognition of this harsh reality led the NAACP to adopt a unanimous resolution at our 2016 National Convention supporting state and local policy efforts to restrict the sale of menthol cigarettes and other flavored tobacco products, as well as advocating for the FDA’s careful oversight and review of all tobacco products.
“The proposed measure by the FDA is long overdue to protect the health of African Americans and to reduce the deleterious impact of menthol smoking and tobacco use overall on America’s health,” Marjorie Innocent, NAACP Senior Director of Health Programs.