ExxonMobil Plans To Reduce Tobacco Sales to Minors in Agreement with State Attorneys General
Officials from ExxonMobil yesterday announced that the company has voluntarily entered into an agreement with attorneys general from 43 states, the District of Columbia and two U.S. territories to implement policies aimed at reducing sales of tobacco to minors, the AP/Contra Costa Times reports. Noting that nearly half of underage smokers report that they buy cigarettes from gas stations, ExxonMobil officials agreed to begin new employee-training standards in the company's 1,000 U.S. stores that will require employees to check identification of anyone purchasing tobacco who "appears under the age of 27." In addition, the company will prohibit self-service displays and free samples of tobacco products. ExxonMobil will employ internal monitors and also hire an outside firm to monitor compliance. Company officials said they would make a "good faith" effort to ensure that 16,000 independently owned franchises comply with laws against selling tobacco to minors. California has the third-highest number of ExxonMobil franchises and stores in the nation; a spokesperson for Attorney General Bill Lockyer (D) said that officials will also continue monitoring compliance through the Stop Tobacco Access to Kids Enforcement program (Chu, AP/Contra Costa Times, 8/14). The company will require franchises to pledge in writing that they will not sell tobacco to minors and notify company officials if they are cited for doing so by law enforcement agencies (LeBlanc, AP/Nando Times, 8/14). ExxonMobil is the second major retailer, behind Walgreen Co., to enter into a voluntary agreement to crack down on tobacco sales to minors (AP/Contra Costa Times, 8/14).This is part of the California Healthline Daily Edition, a summary of health policy coverage from major news organizations. Sign up for an email subscription.