Warning! Editing this pageset section will affect all pages on your website.

District, City Leaders Join to Fight Tobacco Use

San Diego Unified, City leaders aim to reduce student tobacco usage through legislation, education
Posted on 06/03/2022

San Diego Unified Board of Education leaders were joined by San Diego City Councilmembers Dr. Jen Campbell and Marni von Wilpert on Friday to announce a new effort aimed at reducing tobacco use by students.

The June 3 announcement came the day after Mayor Todd Gloria signed legislation from Dr. Campbell and von Wilpert to ban the sale of e-cigarettes targeted at minors within the City of San Diego.

The new City ordinance, known as the Stop Adolescent Addiction to Flavored E-Cigarettes (SAAFE) Act, makes it unlawful for retailers within the City of San Diego to sell or distribute specified flavored tobacco products effective January 1, 2023. This includes any tobacco product that emits a taste or smell other than that of tobacco—such as fruit, mint, candy, vanilla, dessert, alcoholic beverage, spice and menthol.

Board and City Officials
City Councilmembers Dr. Jen Campbell and Marni von Wilpert join Board of Education Members Richard Barrera and Zachary Patterson at a press conference to announce a campaign against student tobacco use. Trustee-elect Matthew Quitoriano also took part in the event.

Von Wilpert said Councilmembers are optimistic about a new partnership with the Board of Education to prevent the spread of tobacco use among teens. She stressed the importance of education for students and their families in the fight against flavored tobacco use by young people.

Dr. Campbell, who is also a family physician, delivered a copy of the signed SAAFE Act to School Board Member Richard Barrera, along with current Student Trustee Zachary Patterson and Student Trustee-Elect Matthew Quitoriano. Barrera co-sponsored a Board resolution last fall with Board Vice President Sabrina Bazzo calling for the City to pass a ban on the sale of flavored tobacco.

As Barrera noted at the time, “E-cigarette use among high school students has more than doubled. One in four high school students in the United States use e-cigarettes, and youth e-cigarette use has skyrocketed to what the U.S. Surgeon General and the FDA have called ‘epidemic’ levels.”

At the announcement this week, leaders stressed the importance of both legislation and education to prevent student tobacco use. In addition to educating students about the dangers of tobacco use, school leaders said they will work to help parents learn how to spot e-cigarette devices, which can appear similar to normal equipment students carry as part of their school day.

Flash Drive and E Cig

E Cig Flavors
High-tech e-cigarette pods look like a USB flash drive, are small and easy to hide, and come in thousands of sweet flavors that entice kids and deliver a powerful nicotine hit.

“This new law is going to save lives and safeguard children’s health,” Councilmember Marni von Wilpert said. “Our new partnership with San Diego schools will empower parents with vital health resources so we do everything possible to prevent big tobacco from hooking our children and hijacking their futures.”