Breathe DC

FDA Is Right: Ending Menthol Sales Saves Lives

A hand with smoke coming out of it.

A hand with smoke coming out of it.

April 29, 2021

Breathe DC agrees with the FDA: Ending menthol sales saves lives

Moving to end the sale of menthol flavored cigarettes is right for public health, especially the health of millions of Black Americans

WASHINGTON, DC — Breathe DC applauds today’s decision by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration to move to end the sale of menthol flavored cigarettes.

For more than six decades, Big Tobacco has selectively marketed menthol-flavored cigarettes to the Black communities, with devastating impacts. Smoking kills 45,000 Black Americans each year. Lung cancer kills more Black Americans than any other type of cancer.

“It is imperative that we put an end to the sale of menthol products to reverse over a half-century of relentless targeting by Big Tobacco promoting menthol in African Americans communities,†said Rolando Andrewn, president of Breathe DC. “Millions of preventable deaths and debilitating illnesses are linked to menthol products.

“The bold decision by the FDA will help ensure better health for people in our local communities and across the country. Further, the federal government decision recognizes that all Black lives must breathe,†Andrewn declared.

Breathe DC is the only local Capital area non-profit organization exclusively dedicated to cleaner air and healthy breathing. The organization actively advocates for stronger laws and policies to safeguard healthy air and protect lungs from smoke, air pollution and allergens. Breathe DC public health programs empower adults and youth with lung diseases such as asthma to lead fuller, more active lives.

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