For Immediate Release
Media Contact: Bob Cooper
Date: June 15, 2006
Attorney General Wasden Announces Agreement with Chevron to Curb Tobacco Sales to Minors
(Boise) - Attorney General Lawrence Wasden and the Attorneys General of 27 states and the District of Columbia have joined in an agreement with Chevron Products Company intended to reduce sales of cigarettes to minors.
"Every day we prevent a child from smoking is a public health victory,” Attorney General Wasden said. “With this agreement, Chevron joins the growing list of retailers who have demonstrated their commitment to keeping our kids healthy in Idaho and across the country."
Chevron is one of the nation’s largest oil companies with approximately 9,100 retail outlets in 32 states and Washington, D.C.
The Chevron "Assurance of Voluntary Compliance" (AVC) is the tenth such agreement produced by an ongoing, multi-state enforcement effort. Previous agreements cover 7-Eleven, CVS, Wal-Mart, Walgreens and Rite Aid stores, and gas stations and convenience stores operating under the Conoco, Phillips 66 or 76, Exxon, Mobil, BP, Amoco and ARCO brand names, in the signing states. The agreements cover about 70,000 retail outlets across the nation. Launched in 2000, the multi-state enforcement effort by the Attorneys General seeks to secure national retailers’ agreement to take specific corrective actions to prevent the unlawful sale of tobacco products to minors.
Under the agreement announced today, Chevron will implement comprehensive youth tobacco prevention retailing practices at all company-owned stores. Chevron will also take steps to prevent youth access to tobacco at its franchise outlets in the signing states. These steps include: annual notices of the importance of complying with youth access laws; requiring franchisees to report violations to the corporate office; and modifying franchise agreements to provide that violations of youth access laws could constitute grounds for termination or non-renewal of the franchise agreement.
The Attorneys General recognize that youth access to tobacco products ranks among the most serious public health problems. Studies indicate that more than 80 percent of adult smokers begin smoking before the age of 18. Research indicates that every day in the United States, more than 2,000 people under the age of 18 start smoking and that one-third of those persons ultimately will die from a tobacco-related disease. Young people are particularly susceptible to the hazards of tobacco, often showing signs of addiction after smoking only a few cigarettes.
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