How State Laws Preempting Local Authority to Reduce Youth Access to Tobacco Products Adversely Impact Health

Laws that restrict youth access to tobacco products can effectively reduce tobacco use among youth. Unfortunately, some local jurisdictions lack the legal authority to enact “youth access” laws because of preemption.

Preemption is the invalidation of one jurisdiction’s law by the law of a higher jurisdiction, and it can prevent local government from being able to address its community’s needs. This short fact sheet summarizes new research on how preemption affects health behaviors and outcomes, and explains how preemption of local youth access laws is bad for public health.

To learn more, see our companion fact sheet on preemption of local smokefree air laws. In addition, ChangeLab Solutions also offers a fact sheet series on understanding preemption.